UCL Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering


Undergraduate student wins prize for research on optical frequency combs

2 February 2023

UCL Electronic and Electrical Engineering's (EEE) Yijia Cai bagged the award from the Rank Prize Optoelectronics Committee.

EEE undergrad wins Rank Prize

Yijia Cai was one of nine students to complete a Rank Prize summer placement in optoelectronics in 2022. Under the supervision of Dr Zhixin Liu, UCL Optical Networks Group (ONG), Yijia worked on optical frequency combs – laser sources with many applications in the fields of spectroscopy, metrology, and optical communications – and developed new procedures to optimise their performance and practicality.

The Rank Prize Optoelectronics Committee were highly impressed with Yijia’s work, awarding her the prize for best report following her placement. Yijia’s project led to a research paper which has been accepted by the prestigious international Optical Fibre Communication Conference (OFC), a great achievement for an undergraduate. 

 On being awarded this prize, supervisor Zhixin Liu stated: 

The prestigious Rank Prize gave us a chance to take an outstanding undergraduate project to a world-leading research outcome. This shows our strong research power and high education quality. 

Yijia’s placement was made possible thanks to a Rank Prize Undergrad Vacation grant. These grants let undergraduate students get hands-on research experience during the summer before their final year of study and see what it’s like to work in research.