Dr. John Burke joined DARPA as a program manager in the Microsystems Technology Office (MTO) in August 2017. His research interests include the development of high-stability, low-noise sensors and frequency synthesis to enable new positioning, navigation, and timing (PNT) and remote detection capabilities. He is particularly interested in integration of quantum and photonic sensors into form factors for practical use outside of a laboratory and new capabilities created by these devices.
Burke came to DARPA from the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) Space Vehicles Directorate at Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico where he was a senior research physicist. Burke led a research team developing atomic clocks, frequency combs, optical time transfer, and cold atom measurement techniques for use in space applications such as the Global Positioning System (GPS). Burke also led the Air Force’s contribution to the NASA Cold Atom Laboratory for the International Space Station (ISS) and the timing science plan for Navigation Technology Satellite 3. He won the AFRL Early Career Award, Senior Leadership Award, and Rotary National Award for Space Achievement.
Burke received his Bachelor of Science degree in physics from Centre College and his Doctorate of Philosophy degree in physics from the University of Virginia. His thesis work was on atom interferometry with guided matter waves sourced from a Bose Einstein Condensate (BEC), which won the University of Virginia Award for Excellence in Scholarship in Science and Engineering.
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