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Professor Oehrlein's research interests include scientific and technological aspects of materials processing using partially ionized gases or plasmas. Low-temperature plasmas are characterized by a gas temperature that remains close to ambient temperature, whereas the electron and ion temperatures can be much higher. These kinds of plasmas enable unique processing of advanced materials at both low pressure and atmospheric pressure. A great deal of the work in Prof. Oehrlein's research group is focused on understanding the interactions of plasma with surfaces of materials and how plasma-surface interactions may be controlled to alter properties of materials in desirable ways.
Professor Oehrlein joined the University of Maryland in 2000 and holds appointments in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and the Institute for Research in Electronics and Applied Physics. He served as professor in the Department of Physics of the State University of New York at Albany from 1993 to 2000. Prior to that he was a research staff member at the IBM Research Division, Yorktown Heights, NY.
Professor Oehrlein received a Vordiplom in physics from Würzburg University (Germany) in 1976, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in physics from the State University of New York at Albany in 1978 and 1981, respectively.
Professor Oehrlein is the author or coauthor of more than 260 articles in journals and proceedings, the co-editor of several conference proceedings, and has 11 patents issued. He served on the International Advisory Board of "Plasma Processes & Polymers" and as Associate Editor of the "Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology."
Professor Oehrlein's honors include two IBM Faculty Awards (2002 and 2010), the Plasma Prize of the Plasma Science and Technology Division of the American Vacuum Society (2005), the Electronics Division Award of the Electrochemical Society (1992), an IBM Outstanding Technical Achievement Award (1989), and the Solid State Science and Technology Young Author's Award of the Electrochemical Society (1985).
Professor Oehrlein is a fellow of the American Vacuum Society, a fellow of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry, a member of the Electrochemical Society, and a member of the Materials Research Society.