Skip to Content

Improving wireless networks

Breakthrough Star Sanjib Sur is working on next-generation ‘smart’ technology

Sanjib Sur stands in front of a textured wall.

Sanjib Sur first became interested in millimeter-wave — a band of radio frequencies that enables high-speed broadband access — because of its potential to bring low-cost wireless connectivity to underserved populations. Since joining USC in 2018, that interest has persisted. Today, the computer science and engineering professor is working on designing next-generation wireless network architectures and ubiquitous sensing techniques that make smart objects truly smart.

Making waves. Sur has published nearly 50 peer-reviewed articles and earned nine U.S. patents, with seven more pending. Additionally, he’s racked up seven external grants, including the National Science Foundation’s highly competitive CAREER award, which supports early career faculty with leadership potential.

Practical applications. Millimeter-wave technology is currently being used in 5G cellular networks for high-speed wireless connectivity. But Sur and his team see the potential for millimeter-wave for sensing and imaging applications. They’re developing ways to integrate it into drones and self-driving cars to make navigation safer. They’re also designing privacy-non-invasive and contactless human motion capture and biomarker detection systems that can be used at home to monitor activities, vital signs, sleep characteristics and patient recovery.

Laboratory leadership. As director of the Systems Research on X, or SyReX laboratory at USC, Sur is working to solve challenges related to next-generation networks and exploring ways to better monitor human, material and ocean health.

“Many of our projects are interdisciplinary and in collaboration with co-principal investigators from the electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, physical therapy, neurology, and orthopedics departments, which are not only transforming my own field of research but also opening new areas of transformative research. We aim to build practical end-to-end systems, and not just piece-meal technology, so that the transition time from research to product could be minimized for immediate impact to broader populations.”


Breakthrough Stars

The University of South Carolina’s 2023 Breakthrough Stars represent the very best among the ranks of the university’s assistant and associate professors. Their success will help propel the university for years to come.

Meet our Breakthrough Stars
Illustration of a B with an asterick on a garnet background.