Katsuo Kurabayashi, Ph.D.


Department of Mechanical Engineering

Department of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science

University of Michigan, Ann Arbor



2272 G.G. Brown Lab

2350 Hayward Street

Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2125


Voice: (734) 615-5211

Fax: (734) 647-3170

Click Here for Kurabayashi Lab Website


B.S. in Precision Engineering, University of Tokyo, 1992

M.S. in Materials Science (Physics of Solids), Stanford University, 1994

Ph.D. in Materials Science with Electrical Engineering minor, Stanford University, 1998

Professional Experiences

Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan, 2012 - present

Department of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science, University of Michigan

Macromolecular Science and Engineering, University of Michigan


Associate Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan, 2006 - 2012

Department of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science, University of Michigan


Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan, 2000 - 2006

Assistant Professor, Department of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science, University of Michigan, 2004 - 2006


Research Associate, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Stanford University, 1999-2000

Initiated collaboration with IBM Almaden Research Center for studying heat transport phenomena in conductive polymer films as an extension of the thesis research. Helped initiate a DARPA-funded project on development of microfluidic cooling MEMS devices driven by electrokinetics with Dr. Goodson.


Summer Intern, Components Research, Intel Corporation, Santa Clara, CA, June 1997-Sept. 1997

Developed an experimental technique for measuring thermal conductivities of novel dielectric layers and thermal resistance at metal/dielectric interfaces as a technology transfer from academia to industry. The measured thermal parameters are being used in thermal simulations of the next-generation intel microprocessors.


Research Assistant, MTMC Lab and Stanford Solid State Electronics Lab, Stanford University, 1994-1998

Managed proposal writing, reporting, and company site visits for Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC) contract 357 (packaging sciences). The contract supported the dissertation research on the thermal transport properties of polymer films, and was chosen by the member companies as a 1998 compelling reason for joining the SRC.

Honors and Awards

Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC) Best Paper Award, TECHCON '98, September 1998

International VLSI Multilevel Interconnection Conference Outstanding Paper Award, October 1998

National Science Foundation CAREER Award 2001-2005

University of Michigan Robert Caddell Memorial Award 2004-2005

Co-author of SPIE Best Student Paper Award, Optics East 2004 (with Yi-Chung Tung), October 2004

Pi Tau Sigma Outstanding Professor Award, April 2007

named in Who s Who in America 2010 Edition


Biographical Information


Dr. Kurabayashi received his B.S. degree in Precision Engineering at the University of Tokyo in 1992 and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Materials Science and Engineering with Electrical Engineering Minor from Stanford University, in 1994 and 1998, respectively. Upon completion of his Ph.D. program, he was hired as a Physical Science Research Associate with the Mechanical Engineering Department at Stanford University and participated, for a year, in a DARPA funded project aiming to develop MEMS-based microfluidic technology for future IC cooling. He is Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Michigan, investigating novel actuator and micro-mechanism designs for MEMS, multi-physics domain analysis of RF MEMS, nano-scale thermal energy transport in electronic devices and MEMS structures, and polymer-based microfabrication. He authored and co-authored more than 40 journal and conference papers, two of which received a best paper award (Semiconductor Research Corporation Best Paper Award in 1998, and International VLSI Multilevel Interconnection Conference Outstanding Paper Award in 1998). He is a recipient of the 2001 National Science Foundation (NSF) Early Faculty Career Development (CAREER) Award for his contribution to a study of thermal energy transport in micromachined polysilicon structures at high temperatures. Dr. Kurabayashi has given seminars as an invited speaker at industrial laboratories, such as Xerox Palo Alto Research Center and Lucent Technologies Bell Laboratories between 1999 and 2001 and serves as member of the NSF panel committee for Nanoscale Exploratory Research (NER) Program in 2001.


At the University of Michigan, Dr. Kurabayashi has developed a graduate-level course on MEMS. This course covers highly interdisciplinary teaching materials such as semiconductor physics, micromachining, transducer fundamentals, thin-film mechanics, and heat transfer, which are all necessary for designing the modern MEMS-based sensors and actuators. Students from a variety of graduate programs, including Aerospace Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Mechanical Engineering, and Physics, take this course and are asked to make a team effort to propose a new MEMS design using the knowledge obtained through the course. The course project has resulted in two publications and one provisional U.S. patent since the course started in winter, 2000. He has also developed a research laboratory in the Mechanical Engineering Department, Micro Systems Technology and Science Lab (MSTS Lab), which is currently available full-time for dynamic, thermal, and electrical design and characterization of MEMS and electronic devices.