Gianluca Piazza-Mechanical Engineering - Carnegie Mellon University

Gianluca Piazza

Associate Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering

Courtesy Appointment, Mechanical Engineering

333 Roberts Engineering Hall
Carnegie Mellon University
5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Phone: 412-268-7762
Fax: 412-268-9687


Gianluca Piazza is an Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. Prior to joining CMU he was the Wilf Family Term Assistant Professor in the department of Electrical and Systems Engineering (ESE) at the University of Pennsylvania.  His research interests focus on piezoelectric micro and nano electromechanicalsystems (M/NEMS) for RF wireless communication, chemical/biological detection, and all mechanical computing.  He also has a general interest in the areas of micro/nano fabrication techniques and integration of micro/nano devices with state-of-the-art electronics.  He received his Ph.D. degree from the University of California, Berkeley in 2005. He has more than 10 years of experience working with piezoelectric materials and devices.  He holds several patents in the field of micromechanical resonators some of which have been successfully acquired by industry. He received the IBM Young Faculty Award in 2006 and has won, with his students, the Best Paper Award in Group 1 and 2 at the IEEE Frequency Control Symposium in 2008, 2009, and 2011 and at the IEEE Ultrasonic Symposium in 2012.


B.S. and M.S. 2001, Politecnico di Milano, Italy
M.S.E. 2001, University of Texas at Austin
Ph.D. 2005, University of California Berkeley


The activities in my laboratory are targeted at understanding the fundamental science of micro and nanomechanical structures to control material properties, engineer device design and fabrication, and devise new classes of micro and nanoelectromechanical systems (M/NEMS) that are directly interfaced with electronic circuits. This is done with the overall mission to overcome substantial limitations of state-of-the-art communication, computing and sensory systems.

My group research interests focus on the invention, design, and demonstration of M/NEMS for five main areas: low power reconfigurable mechanical radios, nanomechanical computing, integrated chemical and biological sensing platforms, opto-mechanical and acousto-optic systems, micro and nano phononics.


  • S. Gong, and G. Piazza, "Design and Analysis of Lithium Niobate based High Electromechanical Coupling RF-MEMS Resonators for Wideband Filtering," Microwave Theory and Techniques, IEEE Transaction on, vol. 61, no.1, pp.403-414, Jan. 2013. 
  • S. Ghosh and G. Piazza, "Photonic Microdisk Resonators in Aluminum Nitride," Journal of Applied Physics, 113, 016101 (2013)
  • N. Kuo, G. Piazza, “Fractal phononic crystals in aluminum nitride: An approach to ultra high frequency bandgaps,” Applied Physics Letters, Vol. 99, Issue 16, 163501, October 2011.
  • M. Rinaldi, C. Zuo, J. Van der Spiegel, G. Piazza, “Reconfigurable CMOS Oscillator based on Multi-Frequency AlN Contour-Mode Resonators”, IEEE Transactions on Electron Devices, vol. 58, n. 5, pp. 1281-1286, May 2011.
  • N. Sinha, G. E. Wabiszewski, R. Mahameed, V. Felmetsger, S. Tanner, R. W. Carpick, and G. Piazza, “Piezoelectric Aluminum Nitride NanoElectroMechanical Actuators”, Applied Physics Letters, Vol. 95, Issue 5, 2009.
  • C. Zuniga, M. Rinaldi, Khamis, T.S. Jones, A.T. Johnson, G. Piazza, “Nano-Enabled MicroElectroMechanical Sensor for Volatile Organic Chemical Detection”, Applied Physics Letters, vol. 94, 223122, June 5, 2009.
  • G. Piazza, P.J. Stephanou, A.P. Pisano, “Piezoelectric Aluminum Nitride Vibrating Contour-Mode MEMS Resonators”, Journal of MicroElectroMechanical Systems, Vol. 15, no.6, pp. 1406-1418, December 2006.