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A distinguished pioneer in the invention and practical uses of nanotechnology, he now manages nanoscience and technology research at IBM's Almaden Research Center, San Jose, California. He was elected in 1998 as a member of The National Academy of Engineering (NAE) for his outstanding accomplishments in nanoscale measurement systems and their application to precision metrology. Election to the NAE is among the highest professional distinctions awarded an engineer. A native of Colombo, Sri Lanka, he was educated at the University of London receiving a B.Sc. degree in 1970 and his Ph.D. in 1974, both in Electrical Engineering. After a post-doctoral appointment in the Applied Physics Department at Stanford University, he joined the Electrical Engineering Department at University College, London, in 1978, gaining tenure in 1982. In 1984, he joined IBM Research at the T. J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, N.Y. There, he led the team that developed atomic force microscopes (AFMs) into fully hardened instruments that could be used both within IBM and outside. He invented a number of novel scanning probe microscopes and near-field optical instruments and applied them to data storage and in-situ measurements that improve the yield and/or throughput of manufacturing lines. He holds over 80 issued patents in the areas of nano-metrology, scanning probe microscopy, storage, insitu measurement and control in semiconductor manufacturing. Among the microscopes he helped to invent are the vibrating mode AFM, magnetic force microscope, electrostatic force microscope, kelvin probe force microscope, scanning thermal microscope and the apertureless near-field optical microscope. In 2000, he and Calvin Quate of Stanford University received the American Physical Society’s Joseph F. Keithley Award for their "pioneering contributions to nanoscale measurement science through their leadership in the development of a range of nanoscale force microscopes that have had major impact in many areas of physics." In June 2001, he moved to IBM's Thomas J. Watson Research Center, Almaden to lead the development of technology aimed at increasing the data density of magnetic hard-disk drives. He was named Manager of nanoscale and quantum studies in August 2002. As Manager of Imaging Science and Measurement Technology his work has resulted in a range of nondestructive nanoscale measurement technologies for chips, magnetic heads and disks which are used worldwide. In addition to being named IBM Fellow from 2002 – 2005 and 2005 – 2006 he is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, and the United Kingdom's Institute of Physics, Institution of Electrical Engineers (IEE), the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Royal Microscopical Society. He received the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Best Paper Award (in the IEEE publication, Group on Sonics and Ultrasonics Transactions) in 1982, the V. K. Zworykin Premium award of the IEE in 1983, and the IEEE Morris E. Leeds Award in 1992. He was named Distinguished Corporate Inventor of the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 1998 and was chosen to be a Centennial Lecturer for the American Physical Society in 1999. He is the author or co-author of several publications including, but not limited to: “Scanning Probe Microscopy”, Scientific American, Vol. 260(10), October 1989, p.98; with Y. Martin, and C.C. Williams, "Atomic Force Microscope -- Force Mapping and Profiling on a sub-100 Angstrom Scale", J. Appl. Phys., 61(10), May 1987, p.4723; with Y. Martin, "Magnetic Imaging by Force Microscopy with 1000 Angstrom Resolution", Appl. Phys. Lett., 50(20), May 1987, p.1455; with Kerem Unal and Jane Frommer, “Ultrafast molecule sorting and delivery by atomic force microscopy”, Appl. Phys. Lett. 88, 183105 (2006); and with D. Nawarathna, and K. Unal, “Localized electroporation and molecular delivery into single living cells by atomic force microscopy”, Appl. Phys.Lett. 93 (15), October 2008, p. 15311.
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    Leader of the team that developed atomic force microscopes (AFMs) into fully hardened instruments that could be used both within IBM and outside
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