PERSON : Dr. Ilkka Laakso (Finland)
This corner focuses on a person who has made remarkable achievements at NITech.
Dr. Ilkka Laakso (Finland)
Specially Appointed Associate Professor
I received my doctoral degree in electromagnetic theory from Aalto University, Finland in spring 2011. Right after getting my doctoral degree, I joined NITech as a postdoctoral researcher, with partial funding from the Academy of Finland. I chose to come to NITech because I was interested in continuing my research on physical interaction mechanisms of electromagnetic fields with the human body. Akimasa Hirata laboratory of NITech was one of the leading research groups in the field, whose research had greatly impacted international standards of human electromagnetic field exposure.
In 2013, I was appointed a Research Assistant Professor, and in 2014, a Research Associate Professor at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering. In my research at NITech, I study both safety of electromagnetic fields and their medical applications. This requires developing new theoretical and computational methods for doing detailed computer simulations of electromagnetic, neural, and thermoregulatory processes of the body.
Recently, my research interests have been in combining computational electromagnetics with medical image processing and biological neuron modelling. The purpose of the research is to offer the medical and electrical engineering community new computational methods for individual physical modelling of the human body. The computational tools I have developed at NITech can reveal the electromagnetic and bioelectrical mechanism of non-invasive stimulation. In the future, the methods will help scientists to carefully craft stimulation protocols rather than relying on trial and error, which will by very useful, for instance, in brain research.
One of the best experiences from my time at NITech has been to have my research featured in Japanese media. I have participated in the development of a novel computer simulation model for heat stroke developed at NITech Hirata laboratory. The research results have been featured several times in national newspapers and television programmes. I also briefly appeared in Japanese television.
Thanks to my research achievements at NITech I got a Tenure track position at Aalto University, which is the top technical university in Finland. I will return to Finland in September 2015, after nearly four and half years at NITech. During this time, NITech has offered me excellent facilities for doing research and many opportunities for multidisciplinary collaboration with scientists from other universities and research institutes in Japan.