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John Volakis - The Ohio State University. Columbus, OH, US

John Volakis

Professor & Chope Chair, Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering | College of Engineering | The Ohio State University


Electrical engineering expert, focusing on computational electromagnetics






Dr. John Volakis, Ohio State University, 2016 Distinguished Scholar




Professor John L. Volakis is the Roy and Lois Chope Chair Professor of Engineering at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (2003-Present) and the former Director of the ElectroScience Laboratory (2003-2016) at the Ohio State University. He received his B.E. from Youngstown State University, Youngstown, OH in 1978 and the M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees from the Ohio State University in 1979 and 1982 respectively. Prof. Volakis has more than 30 years of experience in sensors and sensing, novel metamaterial antennas, RF materials for high performance hardware, UWB beamforming arrays and RF systems integration.

Industry Expertise (5)


Electrical Engineering

Mechanical/Industrial Engineering

Writing and Editing


Areas of Expertise (10)

Wireless Communication and Propagation

Antennas and Arrays

RF Materials and Packaging

RF Matching and Tunable Circuits


Medical Sensing

Millimeter Waves & TeraHertz

Computational Electromagnetics

Electromagnetic Compatability and Interference

Scattering and Diffraction

Accomplishments (2)

Chair USNC/URSI Comission B (professional)


Awarded by the United States National Committee for the International Union of Radio Science Membership

IEEE Antennas and Propagation Society Distinguished Award (professional)


Awarded by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers

Education (3)

Ohio State University: Ph.D., Electrical Engineering 1982

Ohio State University: M. Sci 1979

Youngstown State: B.E., Engineering 1978

Affiliations (1)

  • ElectroScience Laboratory

Media Appearances (4)

Goodbye, Gimmicks, Hello, Smart Solutions: Wearable Tech Shows Signs of Growing Up



At Ohio State University — a consortium member school — Dr. John Volakis, director of the ElectroScience Laboratory, and his team achieved a significant first. Using a standard sewing machine, they’ve embroidered polymerized silver threads into fabric that creates a circuit “as good as a standard circuit board,” says Dr. Volakis. At 0.1 mm in precision, the embroidered circuits have different frequencies depending on their geometric shape, and linked together can create a broadband network in a shirt or jacket to ensure that the smartphone you’re carrying, for example, always has good reception...

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Precise Embroidered Circuits Bring Next-Gen Wearables Closer To Reality



“A revolution is happening in the textile industry” says director of the Ohio State University laboratory John Volakis. “We believe that functional textiles are an enabling technology for communications and sensing—and one day even medical applications like imaging and monitoring.”...

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Get Your Technology Out of My Pants, or Why Smart Tech Can Get So, So Dumb



Here's one example: Researchers at Ohio State University have successfully woven circuits into clothes with the exactness needed to integrate them into printed metal circuit boards, TechCrunch reported. The next step is to "incorporate receivers and electronic components" into them, said Ohio State ElectroScience Laboratory director John Volakis. For "medical applications like imaging and health monitoring," this success is a stride in the right direction...

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Wired Textiles for a Phone as Useful as the Shirt on Your Back

The New York Times  


John Volakis wants to make the world hands-free. The director of the ElectroScience Laboratory at Ohio State University, he is trying to end the need for cellphone hardware like the Bluetooth earpiece by fabricating communication devices out of something that most states require we carry with us all the time anyway: clothing. “You won’t have to hold your cellphone to your ear,” said Dr. Volakis, an electrical engineer. “We’ll eliminate all that. It will be part of your attire.”...

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Recent Research (2)

​Computers in Your Clothes? A Milestone for Wearable Electronics

The Ohio State University


That last item is one that John Volakis, director of the ElectroScience Laboratory at Ohio State, and research scientist Asimina Kiourti are investigating. The idea is to make brain implants, which are under development to treat conditions from epilepsy to addiction, more comfortable by eliminating the need for external wiring on the patient’s body. “A revolution is happening in the textile industry,” said Volakis, who is also the Roy & Lois Chope Chair Professor of Electrical Engineering at Ohio State. “We believe that functional textiles are an enabling technology for communications and sensing—and one day even medical applications like imaging and health monitoring.”...

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Antennas In Your Clothes? New Design Could Pave The Way

The Ohio State University


John Volakis, the Roy & Lois Chope Chair Professor and Director of the ElectroScience Laboratory at Ohio State, found a common analogy for the new design. “In a way, we’re doing what’s already been done on a cell phone. You don’t see cell phones with external antennas anymore, because the antenna is part of the body of the phone,” Volakis said. When antennas make contact with the human skin, however, the body tends to absorb radio signals and form a short circuit – a fact driven home by the recent difficulties with the antenna placement on the iPhone 4. Also, if an antenna is improperly placed, a person’s body can block it when he or she moves against a wall or other obstacles...

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