Susan D. Allen

Visiting Distinguished Professor
Mechanical Engineering Department
College of Engineering

Areas of Expertise

Laser sensor development, laser removal and analysis of surface contaminants and particles, laser processing of materials including deposition and micromachining, laser and other spectroscopy, light interactions with materials and other applications of lasers and LEDs.  
Susan D. Allen

Dr. Allen's previous university administrative/faculty appointments include: 

  • Vice Chancellor for Research and Academic Affairs at Arkansas State University; Director of the Arkansas Center for Laser Applications and Science; Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Electrical Engineering
  • Vice President for Research at Florida State University; Professor of Chemistry (FSU) and Electrical and Computer Engineering (FAMU/FSU)
  • Dean of the Graduate School/Vice Provost for Research at Tulane University; Professor of Chemistry and Electrical and Computer Engineering
  • Professor of Chemistry and Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Iowa
  • Research Associate Professsor of Electrical Engineering/Electrophysics at the University of Southern California

She has more than 150 scientific and engineering publications, many presentations to professional societies and other groups and nine U.S. patents.  She has served on advisory panels for the National Science Foundation, the National Academy of Sciences and was appointed to the President's Committee for the National Medal of Science.  

Professor Allen has been active in the Materials Research Society, the Optical Society of America, the American Vacuum Society, Sigma Xi, several women in engineering and science organizations, is a Senior Member of IEEE and a Fellow of SPIE.

  • Ph.D. - Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry, University of Southern California

  • ME 800: Dissertation

General Chemistry, Introduction to Lasers and Applications,  How to Present Scientific Research, Honors General Chemistry, Instrumentation, Electricity and Magnetism


  • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University; Nov 2012-present
  • Arkansas State University; Nov 2002-Oct 2012
  • Florida State University; Jul 1996-Oct 2002
  • Tulane University;; Aug 1992-Jun 1996
  • University of Iowa; Aug 1987-Jul 1992
  • University of Southern California; Aug 1987-Jul 1988
  • Hughes Research Laboratories; Feb 1973-July 1977

  • American Society for Engineering Education
  • American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
  • American Physical Society
  • American Chemical Society; Kendall Award Committee (1988-90)
  • Society of Women Engineers - Faculty Advisor, Univ of Iowa Chapter (1988-92)
  • Optical Society of America, Technical Group Chair (1989-92), Education Council (1991‑94)
  • The Association of Women in Science - Founding Member ‑ E. Iowa Chapter (1991)
  • WEPAN - Women in Engineering ProActive Network
  • IEEE - Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (Senior Member)
  • Sigma Xi – President FSU Chapter (2002)
  • Bohemische Physikalische Gesellschaft
  • American Association of University Women
  • SPIE ‑ International Society for Optical Engineering - Fellow (2010)
  • American Vacuum Society, Trustee (Chair-1988), Board of Directors (1982-84)

  • President’s Committee for the National Medal of Science (2007-09)
  • Fellow of SPIE – International Society for Optical Engineering (2010)
  • International Women’s Forum (2003- ) - international organization of influential women
  • NSF - multiple advisory boards, committees, review panels and site visit teams.
  • National Academy of Sciences - Naval Studies Board (1996-97)
  • Oak Ridge Associated Universities - Board of Directors, Foundation Trustee (Chair 1995-99)
  • Association of Graduate Schools (AAU) - Executive Committee (1993-96), Vice President and President-elect (1996)
  • National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges (NASULGC) - Comm on Research Policy and Graduate Education Executive Comm (1998-99); Council of Academic Affairs Executive Comm (2005-07)

Selected Patents

  • Apparatus and method of fabricating directional fiber optic taps, sensors and other devices with variable angle output (with C. H. Lee), U. S. Serial No. 5,500,913  (3/96).
  • Method for producing conductive or insulating feedthroughs in a substrate (with J. K. Lumpp), U. S. Serial No. 5,564,956 (12/96).
  • Method for making radiofrequency NMR detector microcoils (with W. Brey) U. S. Serial No. 6,751,847 (6/04)
  • Apparatus for removal of minute particles from a surface using thermophoresis to prevent particle redeposition, U. S. Serial No. 7,297,895 (11/07).
  • Body limb movement limiter apparatus U.S. Serial No. 7,789,844 (9/10)
  • Multi-color cavity ringdown based detection method and apparatus, Reeve, S. and Allen, S., U.S. Serial No. 8,237,927 (8/7/12); CIP 12/848,816 (8/10