Weiming Yao gaines his PhD cum laude

Weiming Yao of the Department of Electrical Engineering has gained his PhD cum laude. He defended his PhD thesis, about new components for future photonic integrated circuits, Thursday in the Auditorium building of the university.

We are all using more and more data, in part through the enormous growth of online video, big data and the ‘Internet of Things’. There is an increasing demand for computer chips with lower cost, smaller size and less power consumption that make the growth of internet possible and make low energy consumption a viable and affordable proposition.


Photonic integrated chips – which convert the fiber-optic data from light signals into electrical signals – offer the solution. Yao contributed on the development of these chips by designing and testing multiple components. He looked specifically at the emerging proximity effects that occur when chip sizes of increasingly more complex circuits shrink.

Curriculum vitae

Yao (1987) was born in China, but subsequently grew up in Berlin. There he received the bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the Technische Universität Berlin, with honors. An Erasmus Mundus Scholarship enabled him to study at three European institutions. He received a double master’s degree from both Aston University (UK) and Scuola Superiore Sant’Anne (Italy), and performed his master thesis research at Osaka University (Japan).

In 2012 he started his PhD research within the Photonic Integration (PhI) group of Eindhoven University of Technology. Starting from November 2016 he is employed at the PhI group and the newly established JePPIX Technology Center (JTC), working on the research and development of photonic integrated circuits for industrial applications.


PhD awards with the honor of ‘cum laude’ are relatively rare, and an average of five percent of all theses at TU/e are considered for this distinction. To be eligible the PhD work must be of exceptional quality, and must be performed with an exceptional level of autonomy.