Amnon Yariv earned his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1954, 1956, and 1958. He joined the Caltech faculty as an associate professor in 1964 and became a full professor in 1966. Before his professorship in 1964, Yariv worked at Bell Telephone Laboratories in New Jersey.
His research interests include optoelectronics, semiconductor lasers, and quantum well infrared photodetectors (QWIPs).
Yariv has been recognized by OSA for his work with the 1998 Esther Hoffman Beller Medal and the 1986 Frederic Ives Prize. He became a Fellow in 1973 and was elected to Honorary Member in 2017.