Albert W. Johnson University Research Lecture

The Albert W. Johnson University Research Lectureship is awarded annually to an SDSU faculty member for outstanding achievement in research and scholarship. Its purpose is to recognize such achievement, foster its continuation, and enable a distinguished resident faculty scholar to share his/her knowledge more broadly with and beyond the academic community.

The recipient receives a $10,000 contribution to support their research. 

The Albert W. Johnson University Research Lecture series is sponsored by the Division of Research and Innovation and the University Research Council. The Lectureship is the University’s highest recognition of research and scholarly achievement.  The recipient delivers a public lecture during the spring semester and is named a Distinguished Professor in his/her discipline.

Selection of the Albert W. Johnson University Research Lecturer is based on evidence of distinction and recognized achievement in research and scholarship.


2022 AWJ Lecturer: Chris Mi

Chris Mi's lecture, “Wireless Power Transfer – from Science Fiction to Reality,” took place on March 10.

Growing up in a rural area of the eastern Chinese province Anhui, Chunting “Chris” Mi used oil lamps to read at night because there was no electricity in his small village. Once he went to college and began his path as an engineer, he and his father fantasized about building a windmill to bring power to their neighbors. 
The town eventually got electricity without Mi’s intervention, but by then an idea was firmly planted in his mind: to bring electricity, and electrical innovations, to everyone – no matter their circumstance. 
Now Mi is the chair of San Diego State University’s electrical and computer engineering department, leader of SDSU’s GATE Center for Electric Drive Transportation, and an accomplished researcher whose work has made charging electric vehicles far-and-wide cheaper, faster, safer and more efficient. 
Mi’s research encompasses wireless charging, battery management systems, and sustainable energy grids. He is also helping a team of San Diego-based researchers build flying taxis in a $5.8 million project funded by NASA, designing a lightweight propulsion system that allows the air-taxis to take off and land vertically. 
Mi is the recipient of the 2022 Albert W. Johnson Research Lectureship, SDSU’s highest research honor. 

“Chris is a phenomenal researcher and colleague,” said Hala Madanat, interim vice president for research and innovation. “He truly wants to improve the world for everyone, and his research is essential to making wireless charging more ubiquitous and renewable energy more sustainable.”

Learn more about Dr. Mi.