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Dr. John O'Hara performs research in his lab in the Advanced Technology Research Center at OSU.

O'Hara named 2024 President's Fellows Faculty Research Award recipient

Monday, February 26, 2024

Media Contact: Kristi Wheeler | Manager, CEAT Marketing and Communications | 405-744-5831 |

Dr. John O'Hara
Dr. John O'Hara, Associate Professor in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Dr. John O’Hara — associate professor of electrical and computer engineering — was selected as a recipient of the 2024 President’s Fellows Faculty Research Award, a local grant program to support important and impactful research by Oklahoma State University faculty. 

O’Hara’s research includes the use of novel terahertz and optical systems for the realization of 6G communications; optical and RF/optical hybrid sensing and communication; IoT (internet of things); artificial electromagnetic materials; and STEM outreach to rural communities.

The research funding will be used to finance a graduate student working on a device that simulates the behavior of electromagnetic waves when they’re used in next-generation (6G) wireless communications. This device is intended to help network providers engineer real-world 6G networks in the future.  

“I am very excited and pleased to be selected for the President’s Fellows Faculty Research Award,” O’Hara said.  “It is a great honor, personally, of course.  But it also represents the fruit of the strong investments our department (Electrical and Computer Engineering) and college (CEAT) have made to enable impactful research.  My students and I are very excited to use this opportunity to push forward the wireless communication technologies that the whole world may adopt in the next 5-10 years."

O'Hara joined the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering as an assistant professor in 2017. Prior to that in 2011, he formed Wavetech LLC, an automation and controls company predominantly serving the oil/gas industry. He continues to serve in that role today.

From 2006-11, he was a permanent member of the technical staff and the Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies in Los Alamos National Laboratory. There he was part of a team pioneering the studies of artificial electromagnetic materials in the terahertz frequency range.

He was also a director of central intelligence postdoctoral fellow while at Los Alamos, from 2004-05. His industry experience also includes a short stint at Motorola Space systems from 1998-99, where he worked on the Small Deep Space Transponder for deep space science missions.

O’Hara’s education includes a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, followed by a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from OSU in 2003.

As a recipient of this award, O’Hara will receive a one-time $20,000 award to be used towards his research project and will be recognized individually by the university.

ResearchLearn more about O'Hara's research

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