Lan Yang, at the McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis, has been selected to receive the Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Research Award.

Yang, the Edwin H. & Florence G. Skinner Professor in the Preston M. Green Department of Electrical & Systems Engineering, was chosen for the award in recognition of her academic record. She has been editor-in-chief of Photonics Research since 2019 and is a fellow of several scientific organizations, including the American Physical Society. Yang is listed as one of the most-cited researchers in her field; her work has been cited nearly 17,500 times, according to Google Scholar.

As part of the award, Lan, who researches tiny photonic devices with unusual properties for controlling light, is invited to collaborate with specialist colleagues in Germany.

The award, given by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, was created to sponsor distinguished scientists in any discipline. Read more about the foundation.


The McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis promotes independent inquiry and education with an emphasis on scientific excellence, innovation and collaboration without boundaries. McKelvey Engineering has top-ranked research and graduate programs across departments, particularly in biomedical engineering, environmental engineering and computing, and has one of the most selective undergraduate programs in the country. With 140 full-time faculty, 1,387 undergraduate students, 1,448 graduate students and 21,000 living alumni, we are working to solve some of society’s greatest challenges; to prepare students to become leaders and innovate throughout their careers; and to be a catalyst of economic development for the St. Louis region and beyond.

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