Islam Ashry

Research Scientists
Senior Member of IEEE​


Islam Ashry is currently a Research Scientist at Photonics Laboratory in the Division of Computer, Electrical and Mathematical Sciences & Engineering (CEMSE) at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). He earned his B.S. in Electrical Engineering and M.S. in Engineering Physics at Alexandria University, Egypt, in 2003 and 2007, respectively. In December 2012, he earned his PhD in Electrical Engineering at Virginia Tech, USA, with a research focus on investigating the modification of spontaneous emission using layer-by-layer self-assembly. Before joining KAUST, he employed as a Senior Research Associate at the Center for Photonics Technology, Virginia Tech, to develop large scale fiber optical sensing networks with high sensitivity. Dr. Ashry has published around 40 journal/conference papers, has served as a reviewer for various IEEE/OSA journals, and he is a Senior IEEE Member. 

Research Interests

Fiber optical sensors, plasmon sensing, fluorescence dynamics, computational electrodynamics, nanomaterials, and optical communications.

Selected Publications

  • Islam Ashry, Yuan Mao, Yousef Al-Fehaid, Abdulmoneim Al-Shawaf, Mansour Al-Bagshi, Salman Al-Brahim, Tien Khee Ng, and Boon S. Ooi, “Early detection of red palm weevil using distributed optical sensor,” Scientific Reports, 3155, 10, 2020.
  • Yuan Mao, Islam Ashry, Frode Hveding, Ahmed Bukhamsin, Yuxi Hong, Tien Khee Ng, and Boon S. Ooi, “Simultaneous distributed acoustic and temperature sensing using a multimode fiber,” IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics. 5600207, 26, 2020.
  • Yuan Mao, Islam Ashry, Mohd Sharizal Bin Alias, Tien Khee Ng, Frode Hveding, Muhammad Arsalan, and Boon S. Ooi, “Investigating the performance of a few-mode fiber for distributed acoustic sensing,” IEEE Photonics Journal, 1, 11, 2019.
  • Islam Ashr, Anbo Wang, and Yong Xu, “Mode-based reconstruction of chemical distributions in optical fibers," Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics. 5600609, 23, 2017.  
  • Islam Ashry, Yuan Mao, Mohd Sharizal Bin Alias, Tien Khee Ng, Frode Hveding, Muhammad Arsalan, and Boon S. Ooi, “Normalized differential method for improving the signal-to-noise ratio of distributed acoustic sensor,” Applied Optics, 4933, 58, 2019.
  • Chalongrat Daengngam, Ishac Kandas, Islam Ashry, Anbo Wang, James R. Heflin, and Yong Xu, “Fabrication and characterization of periodically patterned silica fiber structures for enhanced second-order nonlinearity," Optics Express. 10473, 25, 2017.
  • Peng Lu, Islam Ashry, and Yong Xu, “Adaptive mode control for few-mode fiber based sensors and sensor networks," Journal of Lightwave Technology, 3562, 35, 2016.
  • Islam Ashry, Anbo Wang, and Yong Xu, “Mode-division-multiplexing of absorption-based fiber optical sensors," Optics Express. 5186, 24, 2016.
  • Amr M. Mahros, Marwa M. Tharwat, and Islam Ashry, “Investigating the characteristics of TM-pass/TE-stop polarizer designed using plasmonic nanostructures," Applied Optics. 4464, 54, 2015.
  • Islam Ashry, Ali Elrashidi, Marwa M. Tharwat, Yong Xu, and Amr M. Mahros, “Investigating the optical transmission spectra of plasmonic spherical nano-hole arrays," Plasmonics. 511, 10, 2015.
  • Islam Ashry, Baigang Zhang, Moataz Bellah Khalifa, Joseph Calderone, Webster Santos, James R. Heflin, Hans Robinson, and Yong Xu, “Fluorescence lifetime based characterization of active and tunable plasmonic nanostructures," Optics Express. 20720, 22, 2014.
  • Islam Ashry, Ishac Kandas, Xiangyu Wei, Joseph A. Calderone, Baigang Zhang, Hans D. Robinson, James R. Heflin, Webster L. Santos, and Yong Xu, “The impact of lithography on the fluorescence dynamics of self-assembled fluorophores," Optics Express. 12935, 22, 2014.
  • Marwa M. Tharwat, Islam Ashry, Ali Elrashidi, and Amr Mahros, “A study of green wavelength-division multiplexed optical communication systems using cascaded fiber Bragg grating," Optical Fiber Technology. 467, 20, 2014.
  • Ishac Kandas, Baigang Zhang, Chalongrat Daengngam, Islam Ashry, Chih-Yu Jao, Hans D. Robinson, James R. Heflin, Lan Yang, and Yong Xu, “High quality factor silica microspheres functionalized with self-assembled nanomaterials," Optics Express. 20601, 21, 2013.
  • Islam Ashry, Baigang Zhang, Stefan V. Stoianov, Chalongrat Daengngam, James R. Heflin, Hans D. Robinson, and Yong Xu, “Probing the photonic density of states using layer-by-layer self-assembly," Optics Letters. 1835, 37, 2012.​


  • Doctor of Philosophy: Jan 2009 – Dec 2012, Virginia Tech, USA. Major: Electrical Engineering
  • Master of Science: Sep 2005 – Jan 2008, University of Alexandria, Egypt. Major: Physical Engineering
  • Bachelor of Science: Sep 1998 – Jun 2003, University of Alexandria, Egypt. Major: Electrical Engineering


  • Distinction Award, Alexandria University, Egypt, 2001-2003

KAUST Affiliations

Computer, Electrical and Mathematical Sciences and Engineering / Electrical Engineering (CEMSE/EE)