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K-State Today

May 2, 2013



Meet one of K-State's newest university distinguished professors: James Edgar

By Communications and Marketing

James Edgar

Kansas State University has chosen five faculty members as its newest university distinguished professors: James Edgar, Stephen Higgs, Ryszard Jankowiak, Philip Nel and Mike Tokach.

Starting today, K-State Today will individually spotlight each new university distinguished professor. University distinguished professor is lifetime title and the highest honor that the university bestows on its faculty. It is given following a universitywide competition conducted by the provost.

James Edgar is the department head and Tom H. Barrett professor in chemical engineering.

Edgar pioneered research on the crystal growth, epitaxy, characterization and device fabrication of wide band-gap semiconductors, including nitride and boride compounds rather than the more common silicon. His advancements have improved the materials that are used in microelectronic devices, such as laser diodes, that have revolutionized communications, transportation, lighting, medicine and consumer applications.

Edgar has received more than $9 million in research funding from the National Science Foundation, U.S. Department of Defense and U.S. Department of Energy. He has authored or co-authored more than 150 papers in scientific journals, edited two books and has presented more than 25 national and international lectures. He has served as the William H. Honstead professor in chemical engineering. He also has received the Commerce Bank Distinguished Graduate Faculty Award, College of Engineering Research Excellence Award, Making a Difference Award and the Sigma Xi Outstanding Scientist Award. He spent sabbaticals at the Naval Research Laboratory and Radbound University in the Netherlands.

At the university, Edgar has advised 27 advanced-degree students and directed the research of 22 undergraduate students. He is a member of the Program Assessment Coordination Committee, Graduate College Assessment Review Committee and chair of the Chemical Engineering Graduate Students Committee. He also has served on the Graduate Council. He has taught nine different undergraduate courses and five different graduate courses. He also has been a symposium organizer for the Materials Research Society, a National Science Foundation review panelist and a reviewer for NASA's postdoctoral program, among others.

Edgar joined the university in 1988 as an assistant professor. He earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Kansas in 1981 and his doctorate from the University of Florida in 1987 -- both degrees in chemical engineering. He is a native of Hutchinson.