Peter H. Siegel
Visiting Associate: Engineering and Applied Science
Senior Scientist Emeritus: Division of Biology (11 years)
Senior Research Scientist:
Jet Propulsion Laboratory (26 years)
Founder: JPL Submillimeter Wave Advanced Technology (SWAT)
Founder/CEO of THz Global, an international collaborative research consulting team working on a wide variety of THz research and applications
Founder and Current Elected General Secretary
International Society of Infrared, Millimeter, and Terahertz Waves
Founding Editor-in-Chief, IEEE Transactions on
Terahertz Science and Technology
B.A. Astronomy, 1976, Colgate University, Hamilton, NY
M.S. Physics, 1978, Columbia University, NY
Ph.D. Electrical Engineering, 1983, Columbia University, NY
Nat. Res. Council Post-Doctoral Fellow, 1984, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies
Email contact phs AT caltech DOT edu
Research in Millimeter-, Submillimeter-Wave and Terahertz Technology and Applications: Earth and Space Science, Biology, Medicine, Defense and related Civilian opportunities
To view Dr. Siegel's current research and his former research group .
Link to the International Society of Infrared, Millimeter and Terahertz Waves
Link to the Kenneth J Button Prize Nomination Form
Link to the IRMMW-THz Society Young Scientist Award Form
Link to 39th International Conference on Infrared, Millimeter and Terahertz Waves held at University of Arizona, Tucson from September 14th-19th, 2014.
Link to 33rd International Conference on Infrared, Millimeter and Terahertz Waves held at Caltech from September 15-19, 2008.
Background and Philosophy: Dr. Siegel’s research specializes in the invention, development and delivery of a wide range of specialized sensor and source devices, components, and instruments spanning the frequency range between 30 and 10,000 GHz which includes the millimeter, submillimeter and far infrared wavelength regimes: the terahertz bands. Emphasis is placed on a cross disciplinary approach which brings together a diverse range of backgrounds and skills that can be directly applied towards progress in bridging the electronic and optical regimes, one of the last remaining technology gaps in the electromagnetic spectrum. Students and staff working with Dr. Siegel have included electrical engineers, physicists, biologists and chemists from a wide range of backgrounds and countries. Research work has been conducted both at Caltech and at the nearby Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where the emphasis is on Earth, space science and planetary applications of THz technology. Dr. Siegel has recently founded a small international consulting company, THz Global, through which he is continuing his THz research work in collaboration with an international team of colleagues with expertise that spans the full range of millimeter and submillimeter wave applications.
Over a 26 year period, Dr. Siegel and his Submillimeter Wave Advanced Technology team at JPL and Caltech developed and delivered critical sensor hardware for four space flight missions: NASA’s Upper Atmospheric Research Satellite Microwave Limb Sounder, the first instrument to directly measure the anti-correlation between chlorine monoxide build up and ozone depletion on a global scale; NASA’s Earth Observing System Aura Microwave Limb Sounder measuring a wide range of stratospheric molecular species involved in ozone depletion, global water distribution, climate change and pollution monitoring across the Earth and carrying the first THz heterodyne radiometer in space - 2.5 THz OH and water line receiver; the European Space Agency’s Microwave Instrument on the Rosetta Orbiter (MIRO), that rendezvoused with comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko and that measured nuclear temperature and out gassing rates of carbon monoxide, water, ammonia and methanol; and most recently the Heterodyne Instrument for the Far Infrared (HIFI) on the European Space Agency’s Herschel Space Telescope, an extremely successful astrophysics mission recording thousands of molecular signatures between 300 and 1900 GHz in and around star forming regions and in external galaxies, to better understand the composition and evolution of the universe.
In addition to Earth, planetary and space science, Dr. Siegel is interested in terrestrial applications of terahertz imaging and spectroscopy and has been actively pursuing several related initiatives in the health and biological sciences at Caltech as well as defense and security applications at both Caltech and JPL. The very first National Institute of Health program in the terahertz field, granted to Dr. Siegel in 2002, had the goal of developing high signal-to-noise imaging and spectroscopy instruments for disease diagnostics. A second THz NIH program to develop low loss terahertz waveguide for endoscopy applications has also been completed. Additional work on the thermal and non- thermal effects of millimeter and submillimeter-wave radiation on cellular systems was started in 2008. This work was undertaken in conjunction with the Caltech biology division and a neurophysiologist, Dr. Victor Pikov, then at the Huntington Medical Research Institute in Pasadena, California. Significant expansion of the biological science work at Caltech included work on rats, leeches, zebra fish and oocytes to look at low power millimeter-wave stimulation and control of neuronal responses, which included a collaboration with Francisco Bezanilla and Michael Priest at Univ. of Chicago and Mikhail Shapiro, now at Caltech. Most recently work has focused on the use of millimeter waves for direct medical applications. Three ongoing tasks include non-invasive glucose monitoring using millimeter-wave transmission; non-invasive determination of blood bag spoilage (a collaboration with Yuri Feldman and colleagues at Hebrew University); a program to incorporate and utilize millimeter-wave hyperthermia in a commercial MRI system (a past collaboration with HMRI), and a new program to look at effects of 5G frequencies on tissue heating, with Dr. David Gultekin at Columbia University.
Dr. Siegel is now working out of a small laboratory in La Canada, CA - THz Global - where he has a well-equipped bio-RF facility with epi-fluorescence inverted and upright microscopes, incubators and cell cultivation and measurement systems, and a wide range of RF electronic and mechanical design, assembly and applications components and instruments. Dr. Siegel regularly accesses and frequently consults with former colleagues and friends from the JPL Submillimeter-Wave Advanced Technology team, which he founded in 1992, and which is currently managed by Dr. Imran Mehdi.
Recent and review papers describing current work:
- David H. Gultekin and Peter H. Siegel, "Absorption of 5G radiation in brain tissue as a function of frequency, power and time," Submission ID b449151d-e7ef-46ee-94ed-f0757272a2f7, Scientific Reports, Dec. 3, 2019, under review.
- Peter H. Siegel, Adrian Tang, Rod Kim, Gabriel Virbila, Frank Chang and Victor Pikov, "Noninvasive In Vivo Millimeter-Wave Measurements of Glucose: First Results in Human Subjects," 2017 International Conference on Infrared, Millimeter, and Terahertz Waves, Cancun, Mexico, Aug. 27-Sept. 1, 2017.
- Peter H. Siegel, Wangde Dai, Robert A. Kloner, Marie Csete and Victor Pikov, "First Millimeter-Wave Animal In Vivo Measurements of L-Glucose and D-Glucose: Further Steps Towards a Non-Invasive Glucometer," 2016 International Conference on Infrared, Millimeter, and Terahertz Waves, W4A.1, Copenhagen, Denmark, Sept. 25-30th, 2016.
- Sergii Romanenko, Peter H. Siegel, Victor Pikov, Vincent Wallace, "Alterations in Neuronal Action Potential Shape and Spiking Rate Caused by Pulsed 60 GHz Millimeter Wave Radiation," 2016 International Conference on Infrared, Millimeter, and Terahertz Waves, H5P.02.06, Copenhagen, Denmark, Sept. 25-30th, 2016.
- Peter H. Siegel, Adrian Tang, Gabriel Virbila, Y. Kim, M.C.F. Chang and Victor Pikov, "Compact non-invasive millimeter-wave glucose sensor," 2015 International Conference on Infrared, Millimeter, and Terahertz Waves, F1D, Hong Kong, China, Aug. 23-28, 2015.
- Peter H. Siegel, Yoon Lee and Victor Pikov, "Millimeter-Wave Non-Invasive Monitoring of Glucose in Anesthetized Rats," 2014 International Conference on Infrared, Millimeter, and Terahertz Waves, T2/D-8.10, Tucson, AZ, USA, Sept. 14-19, 2014.
- Sergii Romanenko, Peter H. Siegel, Daniel A. Wagenaar, and Victor Pikov, "Effects of millimeter wave irradiation and equivalent thermal heating on the activity of individual neurons in the leech ganglion," Journal of Neurophysiology, v. 112, pp. 2423-31, Nov. 2014.
- Mikhail G. Shapiro, Michael F. Priest, Peter H. Siegel, and Francisco Bezanilla, "Thermal Mechanisms of Millimeter Wave Stimulation of Excitable Cells," Biophysical Journal, vol. 104, pp. 2622-28, June 2013. Published Supplementary Materials
- Peter H. Siegel and Victor Pikov, "Impact of low intensity millimetre waves on cell functions," Electronics Letters Special Supplement, v.46, no. 26, pp. S70-72, Dec. 2010
- Peter H. Siegel and Victor Pikov, “THz in Biology and Medicine: Towards Quantifying and Understanding the Interaction of Millimeter- and Submillimeter-Waves with Cells and Cell Processes,” 2010 SPIE Photonics West, BiOS, San Francisco, CA, paper 7562-17, Jan 2010. Invited Keynote
- V. Pikov, X. Arakaki, M. Harrington, S.E. Fraser and P.H. Siegel, “Modulation of neuronal activity and plasma membrane properties with low-power millimeter waves in organotypic cortical slices,” Special Issue of Journal of Neural Engineering, v. 7, no. 4, 045003, August 2010.
- Victor Pikov and Peter H. Siegel , “Thermal Monitoring: Remote Temperature Monitoring of Cells Exposed to Millimeter-Wave Radiation using Microscopic Raman Spectroscopy,” IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Magazine, Jan/Feb 2010, pp. 63-71.
- Ken B. Cooper, Robert J. Dengler, Nuria Llombart, Ashit Talukder, Anand V. Panangadan, Chris S. Peay, Imran Mehdi, Peter H. Siegel, “Fast, high-resolution terahertz radar imaging at 25 meters,” Proc. SPIE v. 7671, 2010.
- Nuria Llombart, Agnese Mazzinghi, Peter H Siegel and Angelo Freni, "Design of a Low Loss Metallo-Dielectric EBG Waveguide at Submillimeter Wavelengths," IEEE Microwave and Wireless Component Letters, v. 19, no.7, July 2009, pp. 437-439.
- K.B. Cooper, R. J. Dengler, G. Chattopadhyay, E. Schlecht, A. Skalare, I. Mehdi and P. H. Siegel, “Penetrating 3-D Imaging at 4- and 25-m Range Using a Submillimeter-Wave Radar ,”IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques, v.56, no.12, pp. 2771-8, Dec 2008.
- P.H. Siegel, “THz Instruments for Space,” IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation, v. 55, no. 11, pp. 2957-65, Nov 2007.
- P.H. Siegel and R.J. Dengler, “Terahertz Heterodyne Imaging: Instruments,” Int. Journal of Infrared and Millimeter Waves, v.27, no. 5, pp. 631-656, May 2006.
- P.H. Siegel and R.J. Dengler, “Terahertz Heterodyne Imaging: Introduction and Techniques,” Int. Journal of Infrared and Millimeter Waves, v.27, no. 4, April 2006.
- J.W. Waters, L. Froidevaux, R.S. Harwood, R.F. Jarnot, H.M. Pickett, W.G. Read, P.H. Siegel, et.al., “The Earth Observing System Microwave Limb Sounder (EOS MLS) on the Aura satellite,” IEEE Trans. Geoscience and Remote Sensing, v. 44, no. 5, pp. 1075-1092, May 2006. One of Sci-Bytes most highly cited papers
- Harish M. Manohara, Eric Wong, Erich Schlecht, Brian D. Hunt, P. H. Siegel, “Carbon Nanotube Schottky Diodes Using Ti-Schottky and Pt-Ohmic Contacts for High Frequency Applications,” Nanoletters, vol. 5, no. 7, pp. 1469-1474, 2005.
- C. Yeh, F. Shimabukuro, P.H. Siegel, “Low Loss Terahertz Ribbon Waveguides,” Applied Optics, v. 44, no. 28, pp. 5937-46, Oct. 2005.
- P.H. Siegel, “THz Technology in Biology and Medicine,” IEEE Trans. Microwave Theory and Techniques, vol. 52, no. 10, pp. 2438-2448, Oct. 2004.
- A. Barkan, F. K. Tittel, D. M. Mittleman, R. Dengler, P. H. Siegel, G. Scalari, L. Ajili, J. Faist, H. E. Beere, E. H. Linfield, A. G. Davies, D. A. Ritchie, “Linewidth and tuning characteristics of terahertz quantum cascade lasers,” Optics Letters, v. 29, no. 6, pp. 575-577, March 2004.
- P.H. Siegel, “THz Technology,” IEEE Trans. Microwave Theory and Techniques 50th Anniversary Issue, vol. 50, no. 3, pp. 910-928, March 2002. Special Invited paper.
- Michael C. Gaidis, H.M. Pickett, C.D. Smith, R.P. Smith, S.C. Martin and P.H. Siegel “A 2.5 THz Receiver Front-End for Spaceborne Applications,” IEEE Transactions Microwave Theory and Techniques,MTT-48, no. 4, April 2000, 733-739.
- P.H. Siegel, R.P. Smith, S. Martin and M. Gaidis, “2.5 THz GaAs Monolithic Membrane-Diode Mixer”, IEEE Transactions Microwave Theory and Techniques, vol. 47, no. 5, pp. 596-604, May 1999.
Special THz Pioneer Series Articles from IEEE Transactions on Terahertz Science and Technology
This series of technical articles highlights the careers of individuals who have made significant long term contributions to the field of Terahertz Science and Technology. They appear as the lead articles in each issue of the IEEE Transactions on Terahertz Science and Technology. Enjoy their wisdom and their insights!
David H. Auston: Working Collectively to Combine Complementary Knowledge, Perspectives and Talents (vol. 1, no.1, pp. 5-8, Sept. 2011)
Paul L. Richards: Working at the Edge - Transition Edge Sensors and the Edge of the Universe (vol. 1, no. 2, pp. 341-348, Nov. 2011)
Maurice F. Kimmitt: A Person Who Makes Things Work (vol. 2, no. 1, pp. 5-9, Jan. 2012)
Robert W. Wilson: The Foundations of THz Radio Science (vol. 2., no. 2, pp. 161-166, March 2012)
Richard J. Saykally: Water, Water Everywhere... (vol. 2, no. 3, pp. 265-270, May 2012)
Daniel R. Grischkowsky: We Search for Truth and Beauty (vol. 2, no.4, pp.377-382, July 2012)
Thomas G. Phillips: The Sky Above, the Mountain Below (vol. 2, no. 5, pp. 477-484, Sept. 2012)
Frank C. DeLucia: The Numbers Count (vol. 2, no. 6, pp. 577-583, Nov. 2012)
Federico Capasso: Physics by Design: Engineering Our Way Out of the THz Gap (vol. 3, no. 1, pp. 5-13, Jan. 2013)
Koji Mizuno: 50 Years in Submillimeter-Waves: From Otaku to Sensei (vol. 3, no. 2, pp. 129-133, March 2013)
Manfred and Brenda Pruden Winnewisser: Equating Hamiltonians to Nature (vol. 3, no. 3, pp. 228-236, May 2013)
Philippe Goy: If You Agree with the Majority You Might be Wrong (vol. 3, no. 4, pp. 347-353, July 2013)
Fritz Keilmann: RF Biophysics: From Strong Field to Near Field (vol. 3, no. 5, pp. 505-514, Sept. 2013)
Sir John Pendry: Theoretical Physics for a Practical World (vol. 3, no. 6, pp. 689-698, Nov. 2013)
Shenggang Liu: China's Father of Vacuum and Microwave Electronics (vol. 4, no.1, pp. 5-11, Jan. 2014)
Thijs de Graauw: Intention, Attention, Execution (vol. 4, no. 2, pp. 137-146, Mar. 2014)
Tatsuo Itoh: Transmission Lines and Antennas, Left and Right (vol. 4. no. 3, pp. 297-306, May 2014)
Michael Bass: The THz Light at the End of the Tunnel (vol. 4. no. 4, pp. 409-417, July 2014)
Erik Kollberg: Instrument Maker to the "Stars" (vol.4 no. 5, pp. 537-544, Sept. 2014)
Robert J. Mattauch: Two Terminals are Sufficient (vol. 4, no. 6, pp. 645-652, Nov. 2014)
Hiromasa Ito: Generating THz Energy is Crystal Clear (vol. 5, no. 1, pp. 6-13, Jan. 2015)
Jun-Ichi Nishizawa: THz Shogun (vol. 5, no. 2, pp. 161-169, Mar. 2015)
Derek H. Marin: The Mesh that Helped Ensnare the Cosmic Microwave Background (vol. 5, no. 3, pp. 325-331, May 2015)
Paul F. Goldsmith: New Eyes for THz Astronomers (vol. 5, no. 4, pp. 529-538, July 2015)
Xi-Cheng Zhang: The Face of THz (vol. 5, no. 5, pp. 705-714, Sept. 2015)
Joe W. Waters: THz Meets Gaia (vol. 5, no. 6, Nov. 2015)
Editorials from IEEE Trans. THz Science and Technology
Editorials introducing each issue of IEEE Transactions on Terahertz Science and Technology: Through Nov. 2015
Farewell Editorial - Nov. 2015
- Founding Editor-in-Chief, IEEE Transactions on Terahertz Science and Technology (2011-15)
- Founding Chair, Int. Society of Infrared, Millimeter, and Terahertz Waves (2009-12)
- Elected General Secretary, Int. Society of Infrared, Millimeter, and Terahertz Waves (2011-present)
- Chair, Kenneth J Button Prize Committee (2014-present)
- Chair IRMMW-THz Hosting Oversight Committee (2017, 2020)
- Chair, IEEE Trans.Terahertz Science and Technology Best Paper Prize (2012-15)
- Vice-Chair/Chair, International Organizing Comm., Int. Conf. IRMMW-THz (2004-2011)
- IEEE Distinguished Microwave Lecturer 2005-2008
- IEEE Speakers Bureau 2009-2014
- IEEE Life Fellow 2001/2020
- IEEE MTTS AdCom member - elected 2020
- IEEE MTTS Microwave Applications Award, 2018
- Vice-Chair/Chair, IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques Committee 4 - Terahertz Technology (2002-2008)
- Co-Chair, 39th Int. Conf. on Infrared, Millimeter, and Terahertz Waves, Tucson, AZ, Sept. 15-19th, 2014
- Chair, 33rd International Conference on Infrared and Millimeter Waves and 16th International Conference on Terahertz Electronics, Pasadena, CA, Sept. 15-19th, 2008
- Co-Chair, 18th Int. Symposium on Space THz Technology (ISSTT), Pasadena, CA, March 21-23, 2007
- Organizer/Chair of seven Special Technical Sessions on Terahertz Technology and Applications at the IEEE International Microwave Symposium (2000-2007)
- Editorial Board, Journal of Infrared, Millimeter, and Terahertz Waves (JIMT) 2004-2014
- Special Issue Editor, JIMT, "Terahertz for Life," Dec. 2009.
- Special Issue Editor-in-Chief, IEEE Transactions on Microwave Theory and Techniques, "THz Technology: Bridging the Microwave-to-Photonics Gap," July 2010.
- Technical Program Committee, IEEE International Microwave Symposium (2001-2009)
- International Organizing Committee, Int. Symposium on Space THz Technology (1990-2001)
- Exceptional Service Award, Int. Society of Infrared, Millimeter, and Terahertz Waves, 2014
- Chair IEEE Trans. THz Science and Tech. Best Paper Prize Committee (2018/2019)
- Vice-Chair IEEE MTT Fellows Committee (2019)
- Elected member Microwave Theory and Techniques Society Admin. Committee (2020-)
- Ten NASA Group Achievement Awards
- NASA Space Act Award
- More than 75 NASA Certificates of Recognition for Technology Development
- Three-time winner of JPL Award for Technical Excellence (1998, 2000, 2001)
- Four JPL Team Awards for Technical Achievement
- Two JPL Technical Commendation Certificates
- 10 Patents
- More than 30 Keynote and Plenary talks, More than 250 invited international presentations.
- Founder of THz Global, an international consulting group developing THz applications
- Complete Publications List
ChemMatters, “Peter Siegel: Studying the Energy of the Universe,” an interview article for the American Chemical Society, Sept. 2002, pp. 6-7
NIH e-Advances, “Retooling a Research Career - From Engineering to Biology and Back,” an e-interview for the National Institute of Health, June 2006.
BioOptics World, "Can Neurons Sense Millimeter Waves, a feature article by Barbara Goode, February 2010
Institution of Engineering and Technology, interview and feature supplement article, Electronics Letters, Interview with Dr. Peter Siegel, Dec. 2010
Co-author of Best Paper of the Decade award, Indium Phosphide and Related Materials Conference, 1998
Keynote Lecture and Highlighted Article for an opening exhibit of the National Electronics Museum: “Sir Jagadis Chunder Bose: Traversing the Interdisciplinary Gap Between Physics and Biology,” November 2008.
Founder and author of IEEE Trans. on Terahertz Science and Technology THz Pioneer series: 26 articles to date - one in every issue of the transactions since Sept. 2011.
125 professional staff and student hires
Supervisor of 1 Doctoral, 1 Masters, 2 Senior theses
PI or co-I on 65+ research programs totaling more than $60M spanning 25 years
1000+ pages of technical reports!
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Last updated May 2, 2012.