About me

I will be joining the University of California at Irvine (UC Irvine) as an Assistant Professor in electrical engineering and computer science (EECS) and will be affiliated with Beckman Laser Institute in the summer of 2025. I am actively hiring at all levels, including postdocs, Ph.D. students, research assistants/interns, and technicians. Contact me or fill this form if you are interested.

I am currently a postdoctoral researcher at Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris working with Prof. Sylvain Gigan on computational optics for microscopy and optical information processing. I completed my Ph.D. at Cornell University in 2021. My thesis focused on in vivo deep tissue imaging at high spatial resolution with short-wave infrared light and adaptive optics under the supervision of Prof. Chris Xu, where I designed and built microscopes for deep in vivo mouse brains. I also had a close collaboration with Prof. Steven Adie on computational imaging with optical coherence microscopy.

During my Ph.D., I had two internship experiences. One at Neocis Inc., I worked as a software engineer intern for precision surgical robotics. Another at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, I worked as a research intern in department of radiology and neurosurgery.

My current research interests are in computational and hardware (optical) tool development for real-world applications and fundamental science, especially in biology and medicine.


[Jun.. 2024] Served as a discussion leader in Image Science Gordon Research Conference 2024.
[Jun.. 2024] Presented at Janelia’s first “Computational Optics” workshop (in May 2024) aimed at designing efficient imaging system.
[Feb. 2024] Paper “MicroDiffusion: Implicit Representation-Guided Diffusion for 3D Reconstruction from Limited 2D Microscopy Projections” accepted to CVPR 2024.
[October 2023] Received Optica Foundation Challenge Award as the Principal Investigator, among 10 selected early-career researchers worldwide.
[August 2023] Work on application of deep optical microscopy to operando imaging of chemical process is out in Nature Nanotechnology. [link]
[April 2023] I’ll chair “Biomedical Imaging Technologies” session in Photonics Online Meetup happening in November 13-14, 2023.
[Jan 2023] Joined organizing committee in Imaging ONEWORLD Series, aimed at promoting online scientific communications in microscopy.
[May 2022] 3-photon adaptive optics published! Check it out here.
[May 2022]. Received a travel award by Leibniz-IPHT to present my work in Women in Photonics’ workshop in Jena.
[August 2021] Featured in 2022 SPIE Women In Optics planner. Read more here

Selected work

(* indicates equal contributions, full publication list see google scholar.)

Computational optical microscopy:

MicroDiffusion: Implicit Representation-Guided Diffusion for 3D Reconstruction from Limited 2D Microscopy Projections Mude Hui, Zihao Wei, Hongru Zhu, Fei Xia*, Yuyin Zhou*. Proceedings of the IEEE/CVF Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR) 2024.

Neurophotonics beyond the Surface: Unmasking the Brain’s Complexity Exploiting Optical Scattering“ Fei Xia, Caio Vaz Rimoli, Walther Akemann, Cathie Ventalon, Laurent  Bourdieu, Sylvain Gigan, Hilton B de Aguiar. Neurophotonics 11.S1 (2024): S11510-S11510.


Physics-based neural network for non-invasive control of coherent light in scattering media.” Alexandra d’Arco, Fei Xia, Antoine Boniface, Jonathan Dong, and Sylvain Gigan. Opt. Express 30, 30845-30856, 2022.


Neuromorphic optical proccesors:

Nonlinear Optical Encoding with Recurrent Linear Scattering“ Fei Xia, Kyungduk Kim,Yaniv Eliezer, SeungYun Han, Liam Shaughnessy, Sylvain Gigan, Hui Cao, Nature Photonics (in press).


Large-scale photonic computing with nonlinear disordered media” Hao Wang, Jianqi Hu, Andrea Morandi, Alfonso Nardi, Fei Xia, Xuanchen Li, Romolo Savo, Qiang Liu, Rachel Grange & Sylvain Gigan, Nature Computational Science, 2024

“Hardware-efficient, large-scale reconfigurable optical neural network (ONN) with backpropagation” Fei Xia*, Ziao Wang*, Logan Wright,Tatsuhiro Onodera, Martin Stein, Jianqi Hu, Peter McMahon, Sylvain Gigan, SPIE Photonics West, AI and Optical Data Sciences IV, 2023


Optical microscopy for scientific discovery:

– Deep brain imaging:

Simultaneous multimodal optical coherence and three-photon microscopy of the mouse brain in the 1700 nm optical window in vivo  Xusan Yang*, Siyang Liu*, Fei Xia*, Meiqi Wu, Steven Adie, Chris Xu, bioRxiv, 2023.09.11.557176, 2023.



RFP-Cyanine Dye Probe Pair for In vivo Neurovascular Multiphoton ImagingFei Xia, David Sinefeld, Zong Chang, Xiaojing Gong, Qinchao Sun, bioarxiv 2023.05.04.539515




Short-Wave Infrared Confocal Fluorescence Imaging of Deep Mouse Brain with a Superconducting Nanowire Single-Photon Detector“, Fei Xia, Monique Grevers, Andreas Fognini, Aaron Mok, Bo Li, Najva Akbari,Iman Zadeh, Jessie Qin-Dregely, Chris Xu, ACS Photonics, 8, 9, 2800–2810, 2021.

In vivo label-free confocal imaging of the deep mouse brain with long-wavelength illumination.Fei Xia*, Chunyan Wu*, David Sinefeld, Bo Li, Yifan Qin, and Chris Xu. Biomedical Optics Express 9, no. 12: 6545-6555. 2018.



Multicolor three-photon fluorescence imaging with single-wavelength excitation deep in mouse brain.” Yusaku Hontani, Fei Xia, and Chris Xu. Science Advances 7.12: eabf3531.2021.


– Deep opaque material (battery) imaging:

Three-dimensional operando optical imaging of single particle and electrolyte heterogeneities inside Li-ion batteries.” Raj Pandya, Lorenzo Valzania*, Florian Dorchies*, Fei Xia*, Jeffrey Mc Hugh, Angus Mathieson, Jien Hwee Tan, Thomas G. Parton, Michael De Volder, Jean-Marie Tarascon, Sylvain Gigan, Hilton B. de Aguiar, Alexis Grimaud. Nature Nanotechnology. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41565-023-01466-4, 2023.


Optical sensing:

Two-photon Shack-Hartmann wavefront sensor.” Fei Xia*, David Sinefeld*, Bo Li, Chris Xu,  Optics Letters, 42 (6), 2017.


Closed-loop wavefront sensing and correction in mouse brain enabled by computed optical coherence microscopy“, Siyang Liu*, Fei Xia*, Xusan Yang, Meiqi Wu, Laurie A Bizimana, Chris Xu, Steven G Adie,  Biomedical Optics Express, 12(8), 4934-4954, 2021.

Three-Photon Adaptive Optics for Mouse Brain Imaging.” David Sinefeld, Fei Xia, Mengran Wang, Tianyu Wang, Chunyan Wu, Xusan Yang, Hari P. Paudel, Dimitre G. Ouzounov, Thomas G. Bifano, and Chris Xu.  Frontiers in Neuroscience: 774. 2022.


Microscopic sensors using optical wireless integrated circuits.” Cortese, A.J., Smart, C.L., Wang, T., Reynolds, M.F., Norris, S.L., Ji, Y., Lee, S., Mok, A., Wu, C., Xia, F. and Ellis, N.I.et al, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS)117(17), pp.9173-9179. 2020