Peter Kner – Bio

Peter Kner – Brief Bio

Peter Kner arrived at the University of Georgia in January 2009, coming from the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). Peter had earned undergraduate degrees in both physics and electrical engineering from MIT and had gone on to do a Ph.D. in physics at UC Berkeley.

After completing his Ph.D., Peter joined a Silicon Valley start-up firm and spent five years conducting industrial-scale research on semiconductor lasers. “Working for the start-up was a fun experience,” Peter recalls, “but after it collapsed as part of the bust of 2003, jobs in building or manufacturing high-powered lasers didn’t really interest me.”  Yet, Peter’s professional experience as a researcher in the entrepreneurial atmosphere of Silicon Valley made him a particularly attractive candidate to join the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Georgia.

At UCSF, he turned his focus to building microscopy systems for studying cellular sub-structure, making use of a variety of new technologies to improve imaging at the nanoscale in biomedicine and engineering. He built the first structured illumination microscope (SIM) fast enough to image living cells, working with Mats Gustafsson, a leader in the field of high-resolution microscopy.

Besides teaching and mentoring students at UGA, Peter is developing a new microscope that will use a variety of techniques to measure and correct optical aberrations for in vivo fluorescence imaging.