Sessions to Explore Future of Semiconductors
UT Dallas to Host Two-Day IEEE Dallas Circuits and Systems Workshop
Oct. 17, 2008
More than 100 experts from around the world will gather at UT Dallas on Sunday, Oct. 19, to spend two days pondering the future of semiconductor miniaturization.
They’ll discuss the promise of continued progress in system-on-a-chip (SoC) technology, and they’ll explore what to do in a decade or so when chip designers confront laws of physics that preclude further miniaturization using existing techniques.
The physical features in advanced chips are now so small that variations in the numbers of atoms and photons used in fabrication can result in significant variation in semiconductors’ electrical properties, according to the workshop’s keynote speaker, Dr. Kevin Nowka of IBM Research. And improvements in manufacturing processes can’t be expected to reduce those variations.
“Instead, we must design systems that work in spite of such variations,” according to the abstract for his lecture. “We must develop and employ design processes and design tools to produce variation-resilient designs.”
Another highlight of the workshop is expected to be the talk “Enabling Breakthroughs in Medical Electronics” by Kent Novak, vice president and general manager of the Medical/HiRel business unit at Texas Instruments. And Ken O of the University of Florida will discuss efforts to produce all the core functions of a cellphone on a single chip.
“Once that happens, it completely changes the whole game in the cellphone industry,” said Dinesh Bhatia, an associate professor of electrical engineering at UT Dallas and one of the workshop organizers. “It will further reduce manufacturing costs, reduce power consumption, enable new form factors and leave room to add even more features to a handset.”
Recognized by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers as an important venue for sharing information about circuits and systems, the seventh IEEE Dallas Circuits and Systems Workshop is sponsored by the Dallas chapter of the IEEE Circuits and Systems Society. Workshop details are available at www.ewh.ieee.org/soc/cas/dallas/wks2008/.
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