The Fitzpatrick Center - Duke University

The Fitzpatrick Center - Duke University
Type Disciplines
Private University Engineering
Address Postal Code
305 Teer Building Box 90271 Durham, NC 27708-0271
City State / Province
Durham NC
E-mail Country
Web Phone
link (919) 660-5598
(919) 613-9145

The Fitzpatrick Center for Photonics and Communications Systems at Duke University's Pratt School of Engineering represents a fundamental shift from a traditional academic departmental focus by bringing together faculty from across scientific disciplines working in four research initiatives: biology, photonics, materials and integrated sensors. The Center was established at Duke University in December 2000 by a $25,000,000 gift from Michael and Patty Fitzpatrick.

The Fitzpatrick Center for Interdisciplinary Engineering, Medicine and Applied Sciences opened on schedule in August, more than doubling the Pratt School of Engineering's teaching and research space. The four-building 322,000-square-foot complex is more than bricks and mortar. It aims to help turn North Carolina into a "photon forest" where research and development in photonics can create the kind of technological advance and economic growth found in California's Silicon Valley.

The goals of the Fitzpatrick Center are to:

1. Train the commercial, technical and academic leaders of next generation broadband technologies.

2. Pioneer the establishment of photonics as an information science. Silicon Valley was established by the transition of semiconductor devices from physics to engineering 40 years ago at Stanford. We hope to seed a similar transition in the Photon Forest today.

3. Pioneer new approaches to industrial, governmental and interacademy collaboration. The strength of the photonics industry arises from the power of free and ubiquitous communications. The Fitzpatrick Center seeks to be a nexus for communications and learning between industry and academic partners in North Carolina, California, and around the world.

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