UM at 30 Reaches Scientific Maturity State Key Lab in the World Top Stand of Microelectronics

In the starting week of its Pearl Jubilee University of Macau (UM) achieved a great scientific result in Microelectronics, only accessible to a few top universities and companies in the world, through the presentation of 2 advanced chips, developed in the recently inaugurated State Key Lab of Analog and Mixed-Signal VLSI, in the ISSCC 2011, that demonstrates the scientific maturity of UM in this research area.

The 58th IEEE International Solid-State Circuits Conference – ISSCC 2011 held between February 20 and 23, in San Francisco, USA, is the flagship conference of the Solid-State Circuits Society (SSCS), one of the largest of the 40 societies of IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers), and at the forefront of the current Information Age Revolution.

This year, the conference continued its outstanding tradition of presenting the most-advanced and innovative work, both from industry and academe, worldwide, in the area of integrated circuits and systems, subordinated to the theme of “Electronics for Healthy Living”., Considered the annual world stand of Microelectronics where new developments in the field are presented, the conference has attracted this year more than 3,000 industry and academe professionals from all over the world. The conference covered diversified topics from the field of solid-state circuits ranging from designs at the 22/20 nanometer node, data-converter breakthroughs, wireless sensor systems, future memory architectures, Body-Area-Network standards, high-speed portable wireless circuits, and smart-grid technologies.Some of the key important innovations reported in this ISSCC 2011 includes: Intel presented the latest 3.1 billion transistors Itanium Processor in 32nm with 50 percent increase in transistor population over the previous processor in the line; IBM presented the world's 1st commercial processor chip beyond 5GHz, a 5.2GHz IBM's zEnterprise 196 system at 45nm SOI CMOS, with its techniques for improved efficiency by 25 percent; University of Washington presented wirelessly powered CMOS Glucose Sensor chip for an Active Contact Lens (在主動式隱形眼鏡內建的無線供電葡萄糖感測器芯片); and IMEC presented the world's first 8-bit organic microprocessor.

UM (through its State Key Lab) was this year positioned as the 15th in the world among 46 universities that were able to publish there, 5th in Asia and 1st in China with 2 chips selected for presentation and entitled: “A 0.46mm2 4dB-NF Unified Receiver Front-End for Full-Band Mobile TV in 65nm CMOS”, and “A 0.024mm2 8-bit 400 MS/s SAR ADC with 2-bit/Cycle and Resistive DAC in 65 nm CMOS”, the latter to be integrated in mobile applications. In the 2 sessions where the papers were presented the other counterparts were, among others: TIT-Japan, ST Microelectronics-France, UC Berkeley, NTU & NCTU-Taiwan, Toshiba, KAIST-South Korea, Texas Instruments, Broadcom, Analog Devices and MIT.

The results reported in the 2 papers (chips) were presented to audiences in the order of 1000 people and were highly praised by top experts in the field (including the State Key Lab international scientific advisors), in particular also by well-known professors that are scientific leaders in Microelectronics, who were unanimous to emphasize the achievement of UM, specially with the winning of the Silk Road Award for a Ph.D student from an emerging area in the Far-East, attributed to Mr. He-Gong Wei, Abner. This, opens excellent perspectives for the future development of the State Key Lab in Microelectronics, and consolidates its position in the field with world impact.

This year UM’s delegation was composed by the authors of the 2 papers, was led by Prof. Rui Martins and included also Prof. Seng-Pan U, Ben, Dr. Pui-In Mak, Elvis (Speaker), Dr. Sai-Weng Sin, Terry, and Mr. He-Gong Wei, Abner, Ph.D. candidate (Speaker), all from the State Key Lab of Analog and Mixed-Signal VLSI. Dr. Pui-In Mak, Elvis, while in San Francisco for the ISSCC 2011, was also invited to give a presentation about his work at a seminar in the University of California at Berkeley.