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Brad Petersen
Director of
Communications
1066 ECE Building
306 N. Wright Street
Urbana, IL 61801
Phone: (217) 244-6376
bradp@illinois.edu

Contact Info

Meg Dickinson
Communications Specialist
1068 ECE Building
306 N. Wright Street
Urbana, IL 61801
Phone: (217) 300-6664
megd@illinois.edu

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Alumnus Bob Johnson: brigadier general, electrical engineer and polo player at 89

Alumnus Bob Johnson: brigadier general, electrical engineer and polo player at 89

Alumnus Bob Johnson (BSEE '38) served in the pacific theatre of the Second World War, reached the rank of brigadier general, worked as an electrical engineer, and played competitive polo until the age of 87.

Bruning named distinguished alumnus by College of Engineering

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By Mark Pajor, ECE ILLINOIS
June 11, 2013

  • ECE alumnus John H. Bruning was honored with the Alumni Award for Distinguished Service by the College of Engineering.
  • Bruning was recognized for his outstanding pioneering contributions to semiconductor microlithography and metrology instrumentation.
  • Bruning is the 56th ECE alumnus to receive the award.

ECE alumnus John H. Bruning (MS ’67, PhD ‘69) was recently honored with the Alumni Award for Distinguished Service by the College of Engineering at Illinois. He was presented with the award at the Student and Alumni Awards Ceremony on April 20 in honor of his outstanding pioneering contributions to semiconductor microlithography and metrology instrumentation.

The Alumni Award for Distinguished Service recognizes professional distinction through outstanding leadership, creativity, and entrepreneurship, noting key contributions to the field of engineering. It commends alumni of the College of Engineering for their service to society, the professional community, and to the department, college, or university. Bruning was one of six recipients of the award this year.

John Bruning
John Bruning

Bruning is acclaimed for many achievements, including his work on excimer laser lithography, used to manufacture microchips. Excimer laser lithography allows the production of microchips that have more circuitry on each chip. This results in chips that consume less power, cost less money to produce, and run more quickly and efficiently. Electronic devices, from cell phones to laptops, benefit immensely from Bruning’s work.

Bruning's impact on metrology instrumentation, or the development of instruments to effect more accurate measurements, has also been widely celebrated. He contributed greatly to the development of high accuracy interferometry, facilitating 10 to 100 times greater accuracy in lens components.

Bruning holds 26 patents and is a Fellow of IEEE, the Optical Society of America (OSA), and the Society of Photographic Instrumentation Engineers. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering and has served as president of the American Society for Precision Engineering (ASPE).

Many organizations have honored Bruning for his achievements, and this isn’t the first time his alma mater has recognized him for his exceptional contributions to his field. In 1992, he received the Distinguished Alumni Award from ECE. Other awards he holds include the ASPE Lifetime Achievement Award, the OSA David Richardson Medal, and the SEMI award.

Bruning retired after serving as president and CEO of Corning Tropel Corporation and is currently a trustee at the University of Rochester. He is actively involved with the Rochester Museum and Science Center. He has made generous contributions to Illinois, establishing the Yuen T. Lo Endowed Chair in ECE.

This was the 49th year that the College of Engineering offered the Alumni Award for Distinguished Service, and John Bruning is the 56th ECE alumnus to receive this honor from the college.

Editor's note: media inquiries should be directed to Brad Petersen, Director of Communications, at bradp@illinois.edu or (217) 244-6376.

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