Wei Zhao, co-director of Radiology Research and professor of Radiology and Biomedical Engineering at the Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University, is one of 162 people elected as a 2023 Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI) — the highest professional distinction accorded solely to academic inventors.
The NAI Fellows Program was established to highlight academic inventors who have demonstrated a prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development and the welfare of society. Election to NAI Fellow status is the highest professional distinction accorded solely to academic inventors.
Zhao is also a member of the Stony Brook University NAI Chapter, serving as an Executive Committee member.
According to the NAI, fellows representing more than 300 prestigious universities and governmental and non-profit research institutes and collectively hold more than 58,000 issued U.S. patents, which have generated over 13,000 licensed technologies, 3,200 companies and created more than 1 million jobs.
“Professor Zhao is internationally recognized for her inventions on medical image sensors and her extraordinary efforts to translate novel detector technologies to clinical use,” said Elaine Gould, MD, chair of the Department of Radiology at the Renaissance School of Medicine. “It is gratifying to see her contribution recognized with this honor. We are proud of her achievements, and delighted by her well-deserved induction to NAI Fellow.”
Zhao’s research work in the past has focused on the investigation of amorphous selenium flat-panel detectors for radiography and fluoroscopy. She has also worked on the development of cesium iodide based flat-panel detectors for medical imaging. Her current research interest focuses on the investigation of imaging performance and design optimization for amorphous selenium flat-panel detectors for digital mammography and digital tomosynthesis. Her research work also involves developing advanced detector concepts for improved imaging performance at low dose and high frame rates.
Zhao has received multiple grants including NIH/NIBIB Back-Irradiated Flat-Panel Imager with Avalanche Gain. The goal of this grant is to develop a back-irradiated flat-panel imager using avalanche amorphous selenium. She has also received grants from Siemens Medical Solutions titled “Spot Compression View.” The goal of this grant is to investigate whether spot compression view is needed for wide-angle tomosynthesis.
Zhao will be inducted as an NAI Fellow at the NAI 13th annual meeting on June 18, 2024, in Raleigh, North Carolina.