Electro-optics; liquid crystals; polymer dispersed liquid crystals; holography; remote sensing; color filtration; electrically switchable Bragg gratings
Dr. Fontecchio’s research involves fundamental investigations of liquid crystal interactions to develop novel devices. Using Holographically-formed Polymer Dispersed Liquid Crystal (H-PDLC) Bragg gratings, he has developed novel multiplexed formation techniques for reflective displays, remote sensing wavelength filtration, and a novel strain gauge. He has also investigated the materials development of polymer/liquid crystal systems for optimization of electro-optical characteristics.
In 1998 he received a NASA Rhode Island Space Grant Fellowship. From 1999 to 2002 he was a NASA Graduate Student Research Fellow at Goddard Space Flight Center where he investigated Holographically-formed Polymer Dispersed Liquid Crystal technology for space-borne remote sensing applications. He traveled to Tokyo, Japan in summer 2000 as part of the National Science Foundation Summer Institute, where he studied polymer-stabilized liquid crystal devices at the NTT Cyberspace Laboratories. He has collaborated with researchers at the Josef Stefan Institute in Ljubljana, Slovenia, through an NSF-funded program. At the 2000 International Liquid Crystal Conference held in Sendai, Japan, he was awarded the Best Poster Award from a field of more than 800 posters. He has also served as a Visiting Lecturer in Physics at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth campus.