SystemX

SystemX Seminar: Sustaining Silicon Reliability in High-Performance CPU Design

Topic: 
Sustaining Silicon Reliability in High-Performance CPU Design
Abstract / Description: 

As high-performance CPUs shrink into advanced CMOS process technologies, thinning dielectrics and dwindling wire interconnects demand an ever-increasing complexity of reliability analysis, modeling, and design techniques. This is particularly true for CPUs in notebook and desktop computers, in which to maximize the user experience, it is critical to maximize the voltage and frequency for the small fraction of the lifetime when peak performance is actually needed. An overview of methodologies and design considerations for maintaining the silicon reliability of high-performance CPUs is presented, with particular focus on dielectric breakdown and electromigration as the two most critical limiters. As dynamic voltage and frequency scaling has become pervasive in the mobile and embedded processor space, these techniques will become essential to a broader spectrum of the semiconductor industry as their respective frequencies continue to increase.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, December 15, 2016 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
Packard 202

SystemX Seminar: Development of RF Circuits

Topic: 
Development of RF circuits Using Additive Manufacturing Technologies For Wireless Communication Systems and Sensors
Abstract / Description: 

Additive manufacturing (AM) technologies and three dimensional (3-D) printing have recently received increased interest as they enable the development of cost effective, fast production cycle, environmental friendly and complex components. Following broad applications in the areas of bio-engineering, medicine, mechanical parts and tools, consumer goods and so on, additive manufacturing technologies have been progressively expanded into high frequency applications over the last few years. AM technologies have shown great potential in the fabrication of lightweight, flexible low-cost passive RF circuits while avoiding the use of conventional higher cost microfabrication and cleanroom facilities. Also, they enable the design and development of novel circuits that are difficult to achieve using conventional microlithography approaches and micro-machining.

In this presentation, we will discuss some recent advancements and challenges of utilizing Polyjet and Aerosol Jet 3D printing technologies for the development of microwave and mm-wave components that could pave the way for the mass fabrication of low cost wireless communication systems and sensors. Examples include a complete 3D printed RF line, 3D interconnects and transmission lines up to D-band (110-170 GHz), 3D packaging of an X-band low-noise amplifier, Ka-band 3D printed antennas and 3D printed cavity resonators and filters.

Date and Time: 
Monday, December 5, 2016 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
Allen 101X

SystemX Seminar: hosted by Prof. H. Tom Soh

Topic: 
Engineering Technologies to Monitor and Treat Diabetes
Abstract / Description: 

Diabetes, which affects almost 30 million Americans is the leading cause of kidney failure, lower-limb amputations, and adult-onset blindness. More than 20% of health care spending is for people with diagnosed diabetes. Diabetes technology is a term created in 1999 referring to the interface between the biological sciences and the physical sciences. The term describes engineered technologies applied primarily to monitor and treat diabetes. Currently eight of the most productive engineered technologies that are being applied to diabetes include: 1) blood glucose monitoring; 2) subcutaneous continuous glucose monitoring; 3) wearable and implantable sensors; 4) insulin pumps; 5) closed loop systems (artificial pancreas); 6) telemedicine / mobile health; 7) big data and precision medicine; and 8) cybersecurity of connected devices. This presentation will summarize current advances in these eight technologies and present a major unmet need for each of them. Barriers to achieving maximal benefits from all these technologies can be overcome by creative engineers, to meet the needs of patients with diabetes.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, December 8, 2016 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
Allen 101X

SystemX Seminar: Architectures and Topologies for High-Frequency, High-Density Power Conversion

Topic: 
Architectures and Topologies for High-Frequency, High-Density Power Conversion
Abstract / Description: 

Power electronics are a key element in all kinds of systems and are important for addressing the world's energy challenges. This talk describes emerging approaches in the design of power electronics that seek to address the twin challenges of miniaturization and improved performance. Through architectures and topologies that minimize magnetic energy storage, the scaling limitations of magnetic components can be offset, leading to smaller, higher-performance power converters. One such approach is the use of hybrid switched-capacitor/magnetic conversion. To illustrate this, the talk describes a hybrid "multi-track" converter for telecom applications that provides a 5:1 input voltage range while achieving a power density of > 450 W/in3, over 3 times that of the best comparable commercial design. The use of greatly increased switching frequencies to provide miniaturization is also explored. We demonstrate this in the context of ac-dc converters for supplying low voltage from the grid, and show a prototype design operating in the 3-10 MHz range that achieves greatly improved power density as compared to conventional converters.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, December 1, 2016 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
Allen 101X

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
Applying Open Community Innovation to Semiconductor Product Creation
Abstract / Description: 

We live in the era of the sharing economy, with open innovation and the rise of community collaboration in open source software and 3D design. Even though, with the stimulation of the Maker movement and hardware startup accelerators, hardware innovation is heading in the same direction, it still has not caught up.

Why? There are technical and economic challenges that are specific to hardware that must be addressed. Mr. Kassem will share how efabless is blazing the trail to stimulate a medium where engineers and creative product developers worldwide are connected and enabled to collaborate in defining, designing and making new hardware products customized to the countless application and markets.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, November 17, 2016 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
AllenX Auditorium

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
Millimeter-Wave Sensors Using Ultrasound
Abstract / Description: 

One of the long-standing challenges in the RF community has been the creation of inexpensive millimeter-wave sensors, primarily due to the need for extremely high frequencies (typically in excess of 60-100 GHz). By switching from electromagnetic waves to ultrasound, the wave velocity and associated frequencies decrease by five orders of magnitude, hence allowing the creation of inexpensive CMOS-based sensor ASIC's employing sonar-like techniques to achieve extremely high accuracy sensors.

We show the application of such an ultrasound sensor to the problem of multitouch and force sensing, demonstrating the ability to sense multiple fingers and per-finger force/pressure levels. Unlike conventional capacitive touch sensors, an ultrasound-based sensor is not restricted to planar glass surfaces; it can sense equally well on complex curved surfaces, as well as metal or plastic substrates.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, November 10, 2016 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
AllenX Auditorium

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
Innovations for Enabling Scalable Wireless Capacity
Abstract / Description: 

Wireless technologies are steadily approaching Shannon limits. Network densification (reuse), unlocking swathes of new spectrum, and spatial multiplexing gains via multiple antennas are key to delivering higher network capacity. Enabling these concepts to coherently work together - while also achieving practical, lower cost networks - is itself a key challenge. Dr Barratt will share perspectives on technologies that enable more efficient use of spectrum and greater network capacity to support the future growth of the wireless Internet.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, November 3, 2016 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
AllenX Auditorium

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
Enabling circuit-applications for nanoscale technologies
Abstract / Description: 

At the nanoscale, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have higher carrier mobility and carrier velocity than most incumbent semiconductors (including silicon). Thus CNT based field-effect transistors (FETs) are being considered as strong candidates for replacing CMOS in future digital circuits. The predicted high intrinsic transit frequency has also inspired investigations on analog high-frequency (HF) applications. More recently, it has been realized that CNTFETs may also possess a highly linear transfer characteristic, which is extremely valuable for a more energy efficient usage of the frequency spectrum, particularly in mobile communications. The relaxed technology contraints compared to digital applications, make an entry in the low GHz HF market more probable and feasible than large-scale digital circuit. For medical applications and wearable electronics CNT-based thinfilm transistors have a huge potential due to intrinsically stretchability and high apparent mobility compared to other materials.

This talk presents the state-of-the-art of HF CNTFET technology from an engineering point of view and discusses the incredients needed for enabling CNTFET-based HF applications. The status of the employed multi-scale simulation tools covering physical effects in detail at the atomistic level up to compact models for CNTFET circuit design and simulation will be discussed, along with practical examples for their application, such as the exploration of process and material options for optimizing the transistor toward high device linearity. Furthermore, selected examples for experimental results for important DC and HF characteristics of fabricated devices will be shown. These results also demonstrate the accuracy of a newly developed CNTFET compact model for the design of analog HF circuits. The presentation will conclude with an outlook on the compact modeling of CNT-based thinfilm transistors and related circuit design.

Date and Time: 
Tuesday, November 1, 2016 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
AllenX Auditorium

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
Design Thinking, Basic Research, and the World After the Smartphone
Abstract / Description: 

Design thinking, the human-centered design methodology developed over the last 50 years at Stanford, has been traditionally applied to wicked problems in the product, service, and experience design space. As such, designers are typically working with technologies readily available that have systems for mature manufacturing at-scale. This talk examines the question - "Can design thinking be applied to basic research where the core technologies are still under development and basic material science is still in flux?". And, if so, what is the role of the designer on a basic science research team, and what are the advantages and disadvantages of this approach. We will present a case study using our experience with the Samsung research project in stretchable electronics (Elastronics). The projects goal is to complete basic research into stretchable semiconductor materials, stretchable batteries and and other electronic components potentially leading to advanced configurations of on-skin body area networks (BodyNET) that, going beyond the paradigm of measurement, significant enhanced human capabilities.

Date and Time: 
Thursday, October 27, 2016 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: 
AllenX Auditorium

SystemX Seminar

Topic: 
Non-Invasive Physiological Sensing and Modulation for Human Health and Performance
Abstract / Description: 

The Precision Medicine Initiative challenges biomedical researchers to reframe health optimization and disease treatment in a patient-specific, personalized manner. Rather than a one-size-fits-all paradigm, the charge is for a particular profile to be fit to each patient, and for disease treatment (or wellness) strategies to then be tailored accordingly. Non-invasive physiological sensing and modulation can play an important role in this effort by augmenting existing research in ‑omics and medical imaging towards better developing such personalized models for patients, and in continuously adjusting such models to optimize therapies in real-time to meet patients' changing needs. While in many instances the focus of such efforts is on disease treatment, optimizing performance for healthy individuals is also a compelling need. This talk will focus on my group's research on non-invasive sensing of the sounds and vibrations of the body, with application to musculoskeletal and cardiovascular monitoring applications. In the first half of the talk, I will discuss our studies that are elucidating mechanisms behind the sounds of the knees, and particularly the characteristics of such sounds that change with acute injuries. We use miniature microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) air-based and piezoelectric contact microphones to capture joint sounds emitted during movement, then apply data analytics techniques to both visualize and quantify differences between healthy and injured knees. In the second half of the talk, I will describe our work studying the vibrations of the body in response to the heartbeat using modified weighing scales and wearable MEMS accelerometers. Our group has extensively studied the timings of such vibrations in relation to the electrophysiology of the heart, and how such timings change for patients with cardiovascular diseases during treatment. Ultimately, we envision that these technologies can enable personalized titration of care and optimization of performance to reduce injuries and rehabilitation time for athletes and soldiers, improve the quality of life for patients with heart disease, and reduce overall healthcare costs.

Date and Time: 
Monday, October 17, 2016 - 2:00pm to 3:00pm
Venue: 
Allen 101X

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