SystemX

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
What does the Clock Speed of My Computer have to do with the Fundamental Constants of Nature: h, c, q, m?
Abstract / Description: 

What limits speed?  It could be the clock speed of a computer, or the speed with which we can detect a single electric charge, or we could ask the same question of many other high speed functions.  One view is that the greater the resources poured into the effort, energy, money, etc., the greater the speed.  The other view is that there is a fundamental speed limit that is controlled by the constants of nature, h, c, q, m.  In this talk, the clock speed of a computer processor will be derived.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, October 8, 2015 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
Y2E2 111

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
Efficient Robots: From Components to Systems, Software to Hardware
Abstract / Description: 

SRI Robotics is developing the PROXI™ humanoid robot, which can operate up to 20 times more efficiently than current humanoid robotic platforms. In answer to DARPA's challenge, PROXI was built to demonstrate the possibility of robotic assistance to humans in response to natural and manmade disasters. This talk will discuss the key mechanical, electrical and control aspects of PROXI; as well as the components, integration and software design that has allowed such a high performance and high efficiency robot possible.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, October 1, 2015 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
Y2E2 111

SystemX Seminar: Introduction

Topic: 
Overview of technology advances underpinning SystemX initiatives at Stanford
Abstract / Description: 

From Colossus and Eniac to the present world of iPhone and Nest, machine computation has reached from military use, to scientific pursuits, to commercial applications, to office automation, to home use/entertainment, all the way to a continued presence in our daily lives. This evolution has been propelled by technology advances in semiconductors of course, but also by advances in mechanical assembly, in communications methods, in sensing capabilities, as well as development practices and the supporting business models. This talk will trace the arc of these developments, and do so in the spirit of introducing the focus areas of SystemX. The conclusion of the talk, with its summary of challenges ahead, shapes the organization of the seminar series to follow.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, September 24, 2015 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
Y2E2 111

Special ISL-SystemX Seminar: Architecting Tb/s Wireless

Topic: 
Architecting Tb/s Wireless
Abstract / Description: 

Wireless communications along with the Internet has been the most transformative technology in the past 50 years. We expect that wireless growth driven by the need to connect all humankind (not just 1/3) as well as Billions of things to the Internet will require Terabit/s shared links for ground based local area and wide area wireless access, for wireless backhaul as well as access via unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and satellites. We present a new scalable radio architecture that we refer to multi-comm-core (MCC) to enable low-cost Terabit/s wireless using both traditional and millimeter wave spectrum.

Date and Time: 
Wednesday, August 12, 2015 - 12:30pm to 1:30pm
Venue: 
AllenX Auditorium

SystemX: The Transistor and the Floating-Gate Memory

Topic: 
The Transistor and the Floating-Gate Memory
Abstract / Description: 

Bell Laboratories (also known as Bell Labs) was established in 1925 as a research and development organization of the American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T). At its peak (from mid 1940s to late 1980s) Bell Labs was considered the most prominent research institution in the world, having 30,000 staff with 4,000 Ph.Ds and an annual budget of US$3 billion. There have been seven Nobel Prizes awarded for work completed at Bell Labs.

For 90 years, Bell Labs has discovered or invented a wide range of revolutionary technologies in communication and computing. The most important discovery at Bell Labs is the transistor effect discovered by Bardeen, Brattain and Shockley in 1947. Transistors replaced vacuum tubes and ushered in the Modern Electronics Age. Bell Labs also invented many important semiconductor devices including the thyristor, HBT, JFET, silicon solar cell, MOSFET, IMPATT diode, and CCD. In addition, Bell Labs developed most of the basic semiconductor processing technologies including the zone refining, ion implantation, growth of single-crystal silicon, diffusion, oxide masking and molecular-beam epitaxy.

Dr. Sze was very lucky because his years at Bell Labs (1963-1989) were in the Golden Era of the company. Bell Labs provided a stimulating and challenging environment in which I was welcomed, inspired and abundantly assisted. My main contribution at Bell Labs was the discovery of the floating-gate memory effect with Dawon Kahng in 1967. This seminal discovery has given rise to a large family of memory devices including EEPROM and Flash memory. The floating-gate memory effect is probably the 2nd most important discovery in Bell Labs' history, because it has revolutionized the information-storage technology, ushered in the Digital Age, and brought unprecedented benefits to humankind.

Date and Time: 
Wednesday, August 12, 2015 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm
Venue: 
Allen 101X

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
Carbon Nanotube Sensors
Abstract / Description: 

Carbon nanotubes exhibit a number of excellent mechanical and electronic properties as functional materials in sensors. In particular single walled carbon nanotubes (SWNT) are known for their band gap modulation due to mechanical strain, or electronic property-changes due to interaction with surrounding molecules, but also for their ultra-low power consumption. We present results on individual SWNTs as functional material in field effect transistors, mechanical and chemical sensors. We discuss the influence of process variations on the properties of SWNT devices, and options for sensor fabrication.

Date and Time: 
Wednesday, June 3, 2015 - 4:00pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
Allen 101X

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
A Regenerative Burn-in Test System for Electric Vehicle DC/CD Converters
Abstract / Description: 

In this talk, we present a highly configurable, closed-loop regenerative burn-in test system for high-power, bidirectional DC/DC converters. These converters are increasingly used in electric vehicles. The method presented here reduces power supply and load requirements to less than 1/10th of those required for conventional test setups while achieving converter-to-grid power ratios over 11. These test systems have been implemented at Motiv's manufacturing production line in Hayward, CA. The data from the testing of the first 220 converters is presented to demonstrate the benefits in benchmarking converter performance, reducing infancy and wear-out field failures, conserving grid energy, and reducing test system cost and space requirements.

Motiv Power Systems provides next-generation power management electronics, controls, and software for heavy electric-drive vehicles. Motiv's electric Powertrain Control System (ePCS) provides a battery-, chassis-, and motor-agnostic system for these vehicles, making it easy to integrate new vehicle applications and collect the data needed for efficient management of fleets. Motiv is the only company to have our electric powertrain in vehicles as diverse as school buses, garbage trucks, and delivery vans.

Date and Time: 
Friday, May 29, 2015 - 2:00pm to 3:00pm
Venue: 
AllenX Auditorium

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
Sub-THz On-Chip CMOS Harmonic Frequency Generation, Transmitting and Receiving
Abstract / Description: 

With the advancement of CMOS technology, it has become possible to build compact and low cost sub-millimeter wave signal sources as local oscillator, and even to integrate entire transmitters and receivers on-chip. However, current signal source generation and transmission on CMOS technology suffer from poor performance in terms of output power and bandwidth due to the limited cut-off frequency fmax of the transistor.

In this talk, we propose ways of extending the operation frequency of CMOS around and above fmax on the range of sub-THz, and improving the performance of the signal sources and the down-converters. For that, a new topology of Colpitts VCO is introduced to answer simultaneously for the demand in high output power and wide tuning range. The harmonic approach is proposed to exploit higher harmonics of the fundamental Colpitts VCO topology to reach operation frequencies above the fmax. New design approaches and techniques are proposed and show state of the art performance.

For the signal generation, a model is developed for the Colpitts VCO to show analytically the amplitude behavior of the fundamental and the higher harmonics. While for the signal down-conversion, a model is developed to examine how the LO harmonics impact the conversion gain and NF of the down-converter operated above fmax.

To corroborate the theoretical analysis, the analytical models, the simulations and the circuit design, we show the design and the results of fabricated chips on different CMOS technologies. These chips validate the modeling, analysis and design we introduce, while demonstrating state of the art results in the 130-320 GHz range.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, May 28, 2015 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm
Venue: 
Packard 202

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
Universal Wireless Transport: from Rhetoric to Reality
Abstract / Description: 

Tarana has made fundamental advances in radio performance that power industry's first truly viable wireless transport alternative to the high cost and complexity of fiber. With traditional wireless technologies, performance becomes very unpredictable in environments where links are obstructed by buildings and interfered with by neighboring links, which is typical in densely populated urban areas. As a result, networks today have struggled to scale their capacities in order to meet the growing demand in mobile data. In contrast, with Tarana's adaptive beam technology, networks maintain peak or near peak performance even in dense urban deployments. For network operators, this not only means significant reduction in costs associated with network planning and maintenance, but also much better utilization of spectrum assets. Tarana's solution features advanced interference cancellation technology that increases spectral efficiency by 10-50x compared to state-of-the-art cellular technologies, and improves reliability in unlicensed spectrum.

In this talk, we give an overview of Tarana's universal wireless transport technology and discuss different applications where it can be used to support mobile data explosion in the coming decade. We also review the methodology for validating different performance claims in both theory and practice.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, May 14, 2015 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm
Venue: 
Packard 202

Special Power Electronics Seminar

Topic: 
Solid State Transformer based on HV SiC Devices – Opportunities and Challenges for Renewable Energy Integration Applications
Abstract / Description: 

The advent of WBG (SiC and GaN) devices is poised to revolutionize the power electronics applications – both in the low power and low voltage applications as well as the Medium Voltage (MV) and High Voltage (HV) applications at high power levels. This seminar outlines opportunities for HV SiC devices for MV Power Converters and utility applications and the challenges to apply these HV SiC devices successfully – and as an enabler for Solid State Transformer (SST) for integration of Renewable Energy Sources. The talk will focus on SiC devices based power electronics applications with SiC device voltage ranges from 1200 V to 1700 V MOSFETs, and JBS diodes through HV 10 kV - 15 kV MOSFETs, JBS diodes, and 15 kV SiC IGBTs. Challenges in adopting these HV SiC devices for MV power conversion in terms of high frequency magnetics will also be discussed.

Date and Time: 
Friday, May 15, 2015 - 2:30pm to 3:30pm
Venue: 
Packard 204

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