Mark A. Mentzer, PhD


Mark A. Mentzer, Ph.D., is a research scientist at the U.S. Army Aberdeen Proving Ground. A native of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, Dr. Mentzer completed his BA in physics and music at Franklin and Marshall College (1979). He continued his studies in electrical engineering, with emphasis on solid state physics, devices and materials, optoelectronics, and integrated optics, at the University of Delaware, where he received his MSEE (1981) and PhD (1986). He also received his MAS in business administration from the Johns Hopkins University (1983) and recently completed (2012) his MS in biotechnology, with emphasis on biochemistry and molecular biology, at the Johns Hopkins University.

Dr. Mentzer's current research involves laser-assisted high-brightness imaging, instrumentation for blast and blunt trauma injury model correlation, fiberoptic ballistic sensing, flash x-ray cineradiography, digital image correlation, image processing algorithms, applications of MOEMS to nano- and biotechnology, and investigations of protein folding dynamics. Much of his current work involves extending the fields of optical engineering and solid state physics into the realms of biochemistry and molecular biology, as well as structured research in biophotonics. This includes bioimaging, biosensors, photodynamic therapy, nanobiophotonics, biological signaling, genomics, epigenetics, and biosystems engineering. Mentzer is the recent recipient of the competitive Director's Strategic Initiative award from the ARL headquarters.  His topic is the elucidation of the fundamental biochemistry of mild traumatic brain injury.

Author/coauthor of nearly 100 publications, 14 provisional and issued patents, 3 books, and 1 book chapter, Dr. Mentzer is a reviewer for several technical journals and publishers, and has served as conference chair for numerous technical proceedings. He recently conducted a series of briefs to the National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council, on instrumentation and metrology for the development of personal protective equipment for the military. Dr. Mentzer is the recipient of numerous awards for technical and managerial excellence.

During his career he developed fiber magnetometers, integrated optic circuits and signal processors, missile guidance systems, magnetic memories, telecommunications devices, laser imaging systems, biosensors, and medical imagers. He operated a research and aerospace defense company, managed an optical assembly manufacturing company, and ran global product development for optical systems in Europe and Asia. He also taught graduate engineering and physics courses for 7 years as adjunct professor at Penn State University and has been a frequent speaker at trade shows and conferences for 30 years.

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