Associate Professor Dr. Wolfgang Fink is the inaugural Edward & Maria Keonjian Endowed Chair of Microelectronics with joint appointments in the Departments of Electrical & Computer Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Systems & Industrial Engineering, Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering, and Ophthalmology & Vision Science at the University of Arizona. He was a Visiting Associate in Physics at Caltech (2001-2016), and held concurrent appointments as Visiting Research Associate Professor of Ophthalmology and Neurological Surgery at the University of Southern California (2005-2014). Dr. Fink is the founder and director of the Visual and Autonomous Exploration Systems Research Laboratory at Caltech and at the University of Arizona. He was a Senior Researcher at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (2000-2009). He obtained a B.S. and M.S. degree in Physics and Physical Chemistry from the University of Göttingen, Germany, and a Ph.D. "summa cum laude" in Theoretical Physics from the University of Tübingen, Germany in 1997. Dr. Fink is an AIMBE Fellow, Senior Member IEEE, UA da Vinci Fellow and ACABI Fellow.
Dr. Fink, pursuing an inter-disciplinary systems engineering approach in human-machine interfaces, evolutionary optimization, and autonomous systems, has focused his research on biomimetic systems, biomedical sensor development, artificial vision, computer-optimized design, cognitive systems, and autonomous robotic space exploration.
Among numerous awards Dr. Fink was named co-recipient of the R&D Magazine’s R&D 100 Award and the R&D Magazine’s R&D 100 Editors’ Choice Award (the highest of the R&D 100 Awards) in 2009, both for the DOE-funded Artificial Retina Project. In 2009 he received the NASA Board Award for his pioneering work on a novel autonomous space exploration paradigm. Dr. Fink has over 238 publications and 18 patents awarded to date in the areas of autonomous systems, biomedical devices, MEMS fabrication, data analysis, and multi-dimensional optimization.