ECE News Briefs
ECE Professor Kante to Lead Multi-year Program from the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative
San Diego, Calif., July 28, 2016 -- University of California San Diego electrical and computer engineering professor Boubacar Kante will lead a three-year, $2.5 million project funded by the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative aimed at making solar energy systems cost-competitive with traditional energy sources. With this funding, the researchers plan to develop a new class of solar collectors – based on dielectric metasurfaces – that focus sun rays spanning a wider angular range and allow scaled-down, less expensive tracking systems.
The innovative project will be performed in collaboration with Sandia National Laboratories and will drive innovation to make solar energy systems cost-competitive with traditional energy sources.
“UC San Diego is known as the pioneer of metamaterials research and development. We are at the forefront of efforts to develop structured matter that can be used to control light at will. I am confident that, in collaboration with Sandia, we can leverage our advances in metamaterials research in order to develop less expensive and more efficient solar concentrator systems,” said Kante.
Solar collectors are optical systems that collect and concentrate sunlight onto a small area receiver. The concentrated light heats a thermal fluid, which creates steam to generate clean electricity. Today’s state-of-the-art solar collectors typically use curve-shaped (parabolic) systems to concentrate sunlight. But their curvature limits the range of angles of incoming sunlight that the solar collectors can capture. As a result, these systems must continually track the sun’s motion throughout the day. Funding for the new project will be used to design, develop and fabricate a new class of planar solar collectors that can operate over a broad spectrum of sunlight, thereby reducing the need for expensive continuous tracking systems.
“Critical success factors lie in the ability of this new technology to make use of most of the entire solar spectrum as well as its capacity for large-scale fabrication and integration. In this collaboration, we will address both these issues,” said Julius Yellowhair, a researcher from Sandia National Laboratories who will co-lead the project with Kante.
The goal of the proposed technology is to reach a cost to collection efficiency ratio ($/m2) of less than 0.91, which would be disruptive to current technologies as defined by the SunShot Initiative. Achieving a wider acceptance angle will relax some of the requirements placed on tracking systems and has the potential to significantly reduce the cost, researchers said.
Kante’s team has already made many contributions to the field of metamaterials, which involves developing materials that have properties that do not exist in nature. The researchers will leverage their recent findings on specially designed surfaces that can encode curvature into the phase of planar structured matter.
Sandia National Laboratories operates the National Solar Thermal Test Facility (NSTTF), the only facility of its kind in the United States with test capabilities for concentrating solar power (CSP) technologies. Sandia will perform on-sun testing of the prototype solar collectors. Sandia also has nano-fabrication capabilities, which it will use to fabricate and assemble meter-scale metasurface solar collectors.
If successful, the UC San Diego-Sandia solar collector design could provide solar thermal plants with a low-cost collector that is more efficient than current collectors.
“We are excited to tackle this challenge as the time has now come to use metamaterials for real world applications.” Kante said.
Las Vegas, July 1, 2016 — Each year at IEEE’s Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition, an award is offered for the best demonstration given. The demo portion of CVPR gives researchers and designers an opportunity to share their computer vision systems, and is an increasingly important way of showing the real performance of algorithms and increasing the impact of research work.Professor Trivedi serves as head of UCSD's Computer Vision and Robotics Research laboratory, and specializes in robotics and sensors for a number of cutting-edge applications including "smart cars" (telematics), intelligent transportation systems, “smart rooms" (intelligent environments), biometrics (facial recognition) and sensor-based intelligent systems. At CVPR, Trivedi and his students presented a demonstration based on their paper “Embedded Computing Framework for Vision-based Real-time Surround Threat Analysis and Driver Assistance.”The paper introduces a vision system for automobiles that enables surround scene analysis and vehicle threat estimation. According to the paper’s abstract, “The proposed system analyzes the surroundings of the ego-vehicle using four cameras, each connected to a separate embedded processor. Each processor runs a set of optimized vision-based techniques to detect surrounding vehicles so that the entire system operates at real-time speeds…. A detailed evaluation shows over 95% accuracy and operation at nearly 15 frames per second.”The group’s demonstration involved development and deployment of the entire embedded system in an automobile testbed, which they also used to collect datasets for training and testing. Trivedi and his students created a driver display by connecting the master Snapdragon processor to an Android tablet. A 3D visualization developed on Unity3d showed the relative positions of surrounding vehicles. Each vehicle that appeared on the display was color coded with a light source to indicate the threat it posed to the ego-vehicle.
La Jolla, June 4, 2016 — On June 4th, final presentations for ECE's design competition took place in Atkinson Hall. The event was fun, family-friendly (complete with a baloon artist & photo booth), and multi-generational. The competition amounted to a great day of showcasing ECE students while engaging with community. Author for the San Diego Union-Tribune Dana Littlefeild covered the event in the following article:While demonstrating a safety device for older consumers, college student Gabriel Frischer rattled off a few statistics, including the average number of elderly people treated in emergency rooms each year after being injured in a fall. The answer: 2.5 million.“I’m one of them,” said Jody Evenson , 87, before donning a contraption made of nylon straps, air bladders and foam padding.According to its creators, the AirSave impact protection system is designed to sense when the wearer is falling and will inflate suddenly before the person hits the ground. It was one of several devices presented Saturday morning during a competition and showcase by students in UC San Diego’s Electrical & Computer Engineering Department. Their goal was to create products that would improve quality of life for senior citizens.“I think it would be really handy to have,” Evenson said of the AirSave prototype, adding that she suffered a fall about a month ago while gathering newspapers at the assisted-living facility where she lives. “It’s comfortable to wear and it’s lightweight. It’s easy to put on.”Seven teams presented their final designs Saturday at an event held inside Atkinson Hall on the university campus. The competition was part of the university’s Aging and Innovation Initiative, and was the result of a collaboration between the Jacobs School of Engineering and the Stein Institute for Research on Aging.The university also partnered with the La Costa Glen retirement community in Carlsbad and other similar facilities, whose residents met with the students and helped influence their ideas and designs.Cash prizes were awarded to the first-, second- and third-place winners.Professor Truong Nguyen, chair of UCSD’s Electrical & Computer Engineering Department, explained that the La Costa residents were crucial to the project, in that they helped the students learn about their potential customers — who they are, what challenges they face — before developing a product. For engineers, he said, the work doesn’t always proceed that way.“We want the students to know what the customer needs first and then go out and design,” he said.He said there 80 students in the competition when it started seven months ago. Since then, the number has dropped to about 25 students who were able to advance their projects beyond the idea-phase to actually making something that works.“I want a real prototype,” Nguyen said, explaining that the designs in the competition are close to where they need to be for the students to launch start-up companies.After seeing the students’ designs on display, audience members watched the product presentations and voted for their favorites. Among the items presented were an in-home alert system that reminds a user when the stove is left on, a wearable voice-amplification device for soft-spoken seniors, and a smart pill dispenser and a mobile app both of which could help users organize and take their medications at the proper times.The AirSave device seemed to be a big hit after Frischer, 20, and Jun Lu, 22, gave their presentation. It included a demonstration on how the device can tell the difference between an actual fall and when the wearer sits down or makes some other move.Lu, who will graduate later this month, said this was the first time he had worked on a project in which he was asked to consider the concerns of an older population. “It broadened (the) scope a lot for me as a thinker,” he said.The AirSave team, whose members included Aida Shahi and Borhan Vasli, took home second place and a $2,000 prize.In third place, was Team VITA, which developed pressure-sensitive carpet tiles embedded with LED lights that not only light a person’s path in the dark but also alert others when someone has fallen. The team members were Chao-yu Lee, Wen Li, Pushen Wang and Edward Zhong.In first place was the group that developed the MightyCart, a motorized, foldable shopping cart users steer by pressing sensors on the handle, making it easier to handle heavy loads. Ryan Collins, Gannon Gesiriech, Boulos Haddad and Kevin Nematzadeh — known collectively as Fountain of Youth — took home the $4,000 top prize.
ECE Professor Patrick Mercier partners with Nanoengineering Dept. to design a Flexible, Wearable, Tricoder-Like Device
San Diego, May 23, 2016 — Engineers at the University of California San Diego have developed the first flexible wearable device capable of monitoring both biochemical and electric signals in the human body. The Chem-Phys patch records electrocardiogram (EKG) heart signals and tracks levels of lactate, a biochemical that is a marker of physical effort, in real time. The device can be worn on the chest and communicates wirelessly with a smartphone, smart watch or laptop. It could have a wide range of applications, from athletes monitoring their workouts to physicians monitoring patients with heart disease.
Nanoengineering professor Joseph Wang and electrical engineering professor Patrick Mercier at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering led the project, with Wang’s team working on the patch’s sensors and chemistry, while Mercier’s team worked on the electronics and data transmission. They described the Chem-Phys patch in the May 23 issue of Nature Communications:
“One of the overarching goals of our research is to build a wearable tricorder-like device that can measure simultaneously a whole suite of chemical, physical and electrophysiological signals continuously throughout the day,” Mercier said. “This research represents an important first step to show this may be possible.”
Most commercial wearables only measure one signal, such as steps or heart rate, Mercier said. Almost none of them measure chemical signals, such as lactate.
That is the gap that the sensor designed by researchers at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego aims to bridge. Combining information about heart rate and lactate—a first in the field of wearable sensors—could be especially useful for athletes wanting to improve their performance. Both Mercier and Wang have been fielding inquiries from Olympic athletes about the technologies the Center for Wearable Sensors produces.
“There would certainly be interest in the sports medicine community about how this type of sensing could help optimize training regimens for elite athletes,” said Patrick, who is a member of the Center for Wearable Sensors. “The ability to concurrently assess EKG and lactate could also open up some interesting possibilities in preventing and/or managing individuals with cardiovascular disease."
The researchers’ biggest challenge was making sure that signals from the two sensors didn’t interfere with each other. This required some careful engineering and a fair bit of experimentation before finding the right configuration for the sensors.
For more on this project, check out the news source:
Davis, Cailf., May 15, 2016 — Natcar is a design contest created and hosted by UC Davis and National Semiconductor. It is run in conjunction with UC Berkeley, and is currently sponsored by Texas Instruments. In this competition, teams from across the UC and Cal State systems design, build and race autonomous cars on a track marked by 1″-wide white tape. A 100 mARMS 75 kHz sinusoidal current flows through a wire under this white tape.
The contest is intended for undergraduate students, but teams with graduate students, high-school students or students who have competed in a previous Natcar can compete in separate divisions. The objective of the competition is to design and construct an autonomous race car able to negotiate the taped, preset course in the shortest time possible. The 2016 NATCAR competition took place on 15 May 2016. The course ran 392 feet long and the three undergrad, grad, and alumni divisions housed 33, 1, and 9 teams respectively.
The rules of the competition dictate that the cars constructed by the teams must have four wheels and electrically powered by a single NiCd or NiMH battery pack with a rated capacity of 5000 mAh or less. Teams were also asked to build their own motor control (and step-up converter circuitry if used) using discrete components and IC’s.
UCSD’s undergraduate team, Midnight A-Go-Go, placed second with an adjusted time of 32.96 seconds and an adjusted speed of 11.90 ft/s. The alumni team, Crusherton, placed seventh in their division. Natcar hopes to further improve upon the competition in coming years; this effort will include the creation a new timing system some revision of the rules (for instance, the current ban on lithium batteries may be lifted or altered in future competitions).
San Diego, May 5, 2016 — The Doctoral Dissertation Award is presented annually by the the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) to the authors of the best doctoral dissertations in computer science and engineering. The Honorable Mention Award includes recognition through publication in the ACM Digital Library, as well as a $10,000 prize provided by Google. Sivash is sharing the award with co-recipient Aaron Sidford of MIT, whose dissertation was entitled: Iterative Methods, Combinatorial Optimization, and Linear Programming Beyond the Universal Barrier.Mirarab’s dissertation, Novel Scalable Approaches for Multiple Sequence Alignment and Phylogenomic Reconstruction, addresses the growing need to analyze large-scale biological sequence data efficiently and accurately. To address this challenge, Mirarab introduces several methods: PASTA, a scalable and accurate algorithm that can align datasets up to one million sequences; statistical binning, a novel technique for reducing noise in estimation of evolutionary trees for individual parts of the genome; and ASTRAL, a new summary method that can run on 1,000 species in one day and has outstanding accuracy. These methods were essential in analyzing large genomic datasets of birds and plants.Siavash obtained his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Texas at Austin, which nominated him for this award. He joined the UC San Diego faculty in the summer of 2015.Source: http://www.acm.org/media-center/2016/may/dissertation-award-2015
San Diego, April 21, 2016 — IEEE awards pay tribute to technical professionals whose exceptional achievements and outstanding contributions have made a lasting impact on technology, society, the engineering profession, and humanity. Recipients of IEEE awards are recognized as the most influential members in their chosen field, and are revered for their determination to discover, extend, or complement technological advancements in education, industry, research, and service. The IEEE Alexander Graham Bell Medal, which ECE’s Padovani was awarded this year, was established by IEEE to provide recognition for outstanding contributions in the field of telecommunications.
Roberto Padovani’s work has transformed lives worldwide by providing billions of people with mobile devices that support voice and wireless Internet access. Padovani provided key leadership in developing and commercializing code-division-multiple-access (CDMA) technology during the 1980s and 1990s, a technology which substantially increased circuit-switched voice capacity and enabled efficient high-data-rate (HDR) packet-switched communications. His work has formed the basis for all 3G cellular systems and has also influenced fourth-generation long-term evolution (LTE) systems.
La Jolla, Calif., May 3, 2016 – UC San Diego’s Hellman Fellowship program is a grant designed to provide financial support and encouragement to young faculty in the core disciplines who show capacity for great distinction in their research and creative activities. ECE Professor Vikash Gilja was chosen to be one of the 5 recipients for the 2016-17 Hellman Fellowship in the Science/Engineering category. Gilja’s research focuses on brain-machine interfaces (BMIs), with a specific interest in translating basic research into clinical applications. Using statistical signal processing, machine learning and real-time embedded systems, he develops BMIs that effectively use neural signals to control prosthetic devices for individuals with paralysis and neurodegenerative disease.
ECE Professor Mohan Trivedi among UCSD researchers showcasing Automotive SafeShield at the Consumer Electronics Show
San Diego, April 18, 2016 — For the second time in three years, researchers from the Laboratory for Intelligent and Safe Automobiles (LISA) at the University of California San Diego were invited to showcase their computer vision-based technologies in connection with the Consumer Electronics Show (CES). In 2014, German automaker Audi followed up its presence at CES with a demonstration on the streets of San Francisco with a model equipped with some of UC San Diego’s safety applications for city driving. Then earlier this year, the LISA team was at CES itself in Las Vegas, giving attendees a sneak peek of its latest ‘intelligent transportation’ features as part of Qualcomm’s expansive new automotive pavilion at the show.
Qualcomm’s exhibit included a late-model Maserati Quattroporte outfitted with next-generation infotainment and driver-assistance safety features in collaboration with the UC San Diego lab and private technology companies. “We’ve been working with Qualcomm over the past year, but it wasn’t until late October 2015 that the company broached the possibility of showing our driver-assistance systems two months later at CES,” said LISA Director Mohan Trivedi, a professor of electrical and computer engineering in UC San Diego’s Jacobs School of Engineering. “The biggest challenge was that we would have to redesign our solutions to make them work on the Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, whereas our existing algorithms run on computers installed in the trunk of our test vehicles, because they required so much processing power.”
LISA’s presence at CES underscored the extent to which advanced automotive technologies are rapidly changing what excites consumers. For the past decade, professor Trivedi’s lab has worked on projects for Mercedes, Nissan, Volkswagen, Toyota and Audi, and the UC San Diego lab has become a must-see stop on the itinerary of auto research executives keen to understand how computer vision will reshape driver-assistance systems in future. Indeed, now even non-automakers are forging research partnerships with Trivedi’s group, such as Qualcomm and an incipient relationship with Fujitsu. To meet the challenge Qualcomm presented to LISA researchers at CES, professor Trivedi, postdoctoral researcher Ravi Satzoda, and M.S. students Frankie Lu and Sean Lee had to come up with new computer-vision algorithms to run on the newly-announced 2.4 GHz Snapdragon 820A processor, which is powerful enough to support real-time object recognition and computer vision for driving assistance. Since safety is at stake in many driver-assistance systems, the algorithms had to be able to run in real time – a minimum of 10 to 15 frames per second for automotive applications – in order to give a timely warning to the driver in the event of a pending collision.
In the end, the effort was successful. It allowed Qualcomm to demonstrate the “UCSD SafeShield” technology on the Maserati model to visitors at CES in January. “Our lab’s effort successfully went from a funded effort into an actual CES demo that showed a novel way of looking at the technology to solve a problem,” noted Trivedi, a longtime faculty participant in Calit2's Qualcomm Institute at UC San Diego. "We were very fortunate to team up with an excellent team of Qualcomm engineers who provided us with the latest hardware and mentoring. Our students learn a lot by working on real-world projects, and in this case special thanks go to Jacobs School alumnus Dr. Mainak Biswas [Ph.D. ‘05] for efficiently coordinating our interactions and his enthusiastic support."
The Maserati concept car included some technologies that are already available commercially, including LIDAR laser scanners for automatic braking to prevent front-end collisions. Ultrasonic and optical sensors monitor the driver’s blind spots to enable safer turns or lane changes. For its part, the UC San Diego team focused on computer vision, for good reason. “Computer vision makes sense because camera-based systems are cheaper than other sensors and more reliable in safety-critical situations,” said electrical and computer engineering postdoc Satzoda. “We know that these processors will be powerful enough to merge camera views across 360 degrees around the vehicle.”
Job #1 was to decide which applications were most likely to work on the embedded platform. “We wanted to show that we could have a certain functionality, such as lane-keeping assist, maybe full-surround shield, maybe things related to parking assistance, as a proof of concept for a future when we would have a car with all sorts of driver assistance powered only by Snapdragons,” explained Trivedi
“We had to come up with algorithms that would run extremely efficiently on those Snapdragon processors,” added Satzoda. “These applications are active-safety systems, so they have to be real time.”
The team experimented with novel algorithms after coming up short with standard ones. “We were getting barely one frame per second, which is far from real time,” said grad student Lu, who expects to graduate with his M.S. degree this June. “But after devising new algorithms, we were able to achieve real-time 10-15 frames per second and an accuracy on the Snapdragon between 96 and 98 percent, which was as good as running on a separate PC for detection accuracy.”
The graduate students first worked on lane detection, “because traditional methods of lane detection weren’t very fast,” added Lu. “Most of the traditional methods were designed to run on desktops, and we had to get them working in real time on the Snapdragon. In the end, we were able to achieve 20-25 frames per second so there was more room to experiment with other applications for the CES demo.”
Realizing for the first time that the Snapdragon would be able to do more than just lane detection, they began working on algorithms for vehicle detection. They were successful by focusing on the cars nearest to the main vehicle, rather than on detecting all vehicles visible on the road (using so-called ‘context-aware processing’).
“We didn’t want to over-stretch our resources,” noted fellow grad student Sean Lee. “That gave us a lot of confidence that we will be able to demonstrate that future Snapdragon boards will eventually allow us to detect traffic lights and signals, and also to detect pedestrians at intersections, an important safety consideration for city driving.”
In most current automobiles with built-in cameras, the latest commercial applications (such as emergency autonomous braking) are based on the feed from a single camera. Most technologies today are only about one camera looking forward, but what the LISA team demonstrated at CES involved two built-in cameras, one looking forward, the other to the rear. “We focused primarily on the lane in which the car was traveling and the lanes to its left and right, where other cars might pose the most imminent hazard,” said Satzoda.
“We look at all three lanes around the vehicle, but with just two cameras, you cannot get full 360-degree coverage, so you have to fill in the blanks,” Trivedi said. “So our dynamic SafeShield technology constantly monitors the free space around the vehicle.” It does so by detecting cars and their velocity with the rear camera to predict when they might be in the blind spots on either side. The SafeShield alerts the driver if a car comes too close in the three lanes surrounding the driver’s vehicle. “We developed motion-tracking algorithms and vehicle tracking, calculating the velocities of individual cars, after which the tracker takes over,” explained Satzoda. “It extrapolates how cars will progress through the unseen spots.” The system then alerts the driver via the dashboard display, where flashing red in any area near the car would indicate another vehicle is traveling too closely.
The Maserati was part of Qualcomm’s indoor pavilion at CES, so live road tests were out of the question. Instead, the company deployed two display monitors, one mounted on the front windshield, the other in back. On each monitor they displayed a view of the road recorded during actual test drives, and for CES attendees they ran the SafeShield algorithms on Snapdragon to analyze road conditions as if in real time. “It allowed us to demonstrate how the technology works on different conditions, for instance driving on the highway versus on the street, and driving in the evening or in daylight,” said Trivedi.
The algorithms worked, paving the way for much more robust applications. “We can now add more cameras and more Snapdragons,” said Trivedi. “With minor modifications in manufacturing, more powerful Snapdragons can support this entirely new automotive application.”
“Adding two more cameras allows us to see cars in a blind spot,” said Lee. “We are also thinking about more practical applications, such as driver profile analysis, yielding a report on how risky or how improved the driver is. Parents would be able to know how well their teens are driving.” The LISA team is already testing new algorithms on a Toyota Avalon that has six lasers for full surround, the same number of radars, plenty of cameras, and three computers in the back with their own power supply.
Those computers taking up space in the trunk of a Toyota are just temporary: LISA researchers believe that even very intensive driver-assistance algorithms will one day run on the relatively tiny Snapdragon processors. “This opens up these kinds of computing platforms to machine vision and machine learning-based algorithms,” noted Trivedi. “We’ve shown the promise, and we’d like to add other functionalities that might require more than two cameras.” The main technology showcase by UC San Diego at CES remains the intellectual property of the university. Trivedi filed a patent application for the SafeShield approach before CES.
Both of the grad students working on the project are hoping to get jobs in a related industry when their complete their dual B.S./M.S. programs this June. Sean Lee wants to work in intelligent vehicles or computer-related robotics, while Frankie Lu is more focused on machine learning and image processing, whether for the automotive sector or another industry.
Meanwhile, professor Trivedi hopes to develop an even closer relationship with San Diego-based Qualcomm now that automotive represents a major growth area for the wireless-communications company. “I think we’ll remain engaged with Qualcomm for a long time,” said Trivedi. "Our experience with SafeShield allows us to explore other active safety-related projects with the company given the natural synergy between our expertise in intelligent systems and theirs with novel communication and computing processing. Qualcomm is a leading designer of really powerful embedded processors and a source of talented R&D professionals, so it’s great to have a partner like Qualcomm in our backyard."
“Visitors at CES, including other automakers, expressed significant interest in the demonstration of UCSD Safety Shield and the whole concept of using lane and vehicle information to generate a threat-analysis matrix that can be useful for driver safety,” said postdoc Ravi Satzoda. “We were happy to showcase our research in the Qualcomm pavilion, and in future, we hope to collaborate on developing platforms for production systems showcasing these technologies.”
Professor Trivedi expects to work further with Audi, but it’s not LISA’s only collaborator that is keen to pursue automotive ‘smart’ safety features. LISA is getting ready to launch a major new partnership with Toyota and its Collaborative Safety Research Center for development of a one-of-a-kind system.
News Source: http://www.calit2.net/newsroom/release.php?id=2687
Andrew Kahng's Best Paper at CDNLive Silicon Valley and Megatrends at Cadence Distinguished Speakers SeriesSanta Clara, Calif., April 6, 2016 – For the very first time, CDNLive Silicon Valley ran an academic track during its 2016 meeting, with a UC San Diego professor taking top honors. CDNLive is the Cadence User Conference, which attracts experts as well as users and developers of Cadence technologies and techniques for designing advanced silicon, systems, and systems-on-chip. The April 5-6 event took place in Santa Clara, CA, and drew a standing-room-only audience. According to a conference rapporteur, ECE and CSE Prof. Andrew Kahng "stole the show with his talk on bridging the gap between academic research and commercial Electronic Design Automation (EDA)." To noone's surprise, Kahng's presentation, "Toward New Synergies Between Academic Research and Commercial EDA", received the Best Paper award for the Academic track, which included presentations by faculty from six other universities: USC, Arizona State, Georgia Tech, Purdue, Texas A&M, and the University of Calgary.On the day after he spoke at CDNLive, Kahng (at right) presented as part of Cadence's internal Distinguished Speakers Series. His talk focused on "PPAC Scaling at 7nm and Below." PPAC stands for Power-Performance-Area-Cost. The industry has talked about PPA for a long time, with the A for area also being a surrogate for cost. But with different process choices, multiple patterning vs. EUV someday and other options, area alone is not the only parameter that feeds into cost. According to a review of Kahng's talk by Cadence's Paul McLellan, the ECE professor sees two megatrends that are driving "all the issues" in this area. The first is the "race to the end of the roadmap", i.e., taking Moore's Law as far as possible on existing or foreseeable knowledge, which is expected to result in volume production of 7nm technology in 2018. The second megatrend involves keeping power under control by adopting more extreme approaches after having "done a lot of the easy stuff in previous process generations" to enable low power for markets ranging from mobile to big data to cloud. Kahng's final call to arms in his Cadence talk was for a massive "moonshot" to predict tool outcomes, find the sweet spot for different tools and flows, and thus design in specific tool and flow knobs to the overall methodology. The end-result: a fully predictive, one-pass flow with optimal tool usage. With modern, massively-parallel and big-data architectures, argued Kahng, a former member of the Cadence Technology Advisory Board, it is not unreasonable to use tens of thousands of machines if it could "get us to the moon" of a non-iterative flow.Related LinksReview by Cadence's Paul McLellan of Andrew Kahng's presentation to the Cadence Distinguished Speaker Series.
La Jolla, Calif., April 16, 2016 – The Distinguished Teaching Award is a prestigious award bestowed upon up to eight faculty members and three graduate students at UC San Diego each year. This year, one of these select few will be ECE faculty member Patrick Mercier. The Distinguished Teaching award was created to recognize the important role that excellent teaching plays at UCSD. Recipients of the award are faculty who exhibit creativity, innovative teaching methods, the ability to motivate students to actively seek out knowledge, and an extraordinary level of teaching commitment.
Professor Mercier has been a member of the UC San Diego faculty since 2012. In his teaching career, he has instructed both graduate and undergraduate courses. Some of his course titles include: Biomedical Integrated Circuits and Systems (ECE 203), Digital Integrated Circuit Design (ECE 165), and VLSI Digital System Algorithms & Architecture (ECE 260A). His lab focuses on energy-efficient circuit and system design, with emphasis on miniaturized devices for biomedical applications that employ novel RF, analog, digital, power management, and energy harvesting architectures. Mercier will receive the award at the Distinguished Teaching Awards Presentation & Reception, which will be held on May 13, 2016.
San Diego, Calif., March 3, 2016 – The ONR Young Investigator Award is a grant provided by the Office of Naval Research (ONR) to U.S. institutions of higher education that award degrees in science, engineering and/or mathematics. The Young Investigator Program seeks to identify and support academic scientists and engineers who are in their first or second full-time tenure-track or tenure-track-equivalent year of academic appointment and who show exceptional promise for doing creative research. The program aims to attract outstanding faculty members of universities to the Department of Navy's (DoN's) research program and to encourage their teaching and research careers.New faculty members who receive the Young Investigator Award can only do so by first submitting a detailed research proposal and a supporting letter from appropriate university officials. ECE’s Dr. Duygu Kuzum, a selected 2016 recipient of the award, submitted a research proposal entitled: From Neurons to Microcircuits of Hippocampus: A Computational Model Based on Experimental Findings. Professor Kuzum’s research at UC San Diego focuses on applying innovations in nanoelectronics to develop new technologies that will help us better understand circuit-level computation in the brain.
ECE Professor Javidi receives 2015 UC San Diego Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action and Diversity Award
San Diego, Calif., Feb. 5, 2016 – ECE faculty member Tara Javidi has been selected to be the recipient of UC San Diego’s Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action and Diversity Award for the year of 2015. The annual awards program honors staff, faculty, students, departments, and organizational units or groups that make outstanding contributions in the areas of equal opportunity, affirmative action, diversity during the year. A diversity champion is a faculty member who celebrates cultural differences, promotes fairness at UC San Diego, makes UCSD a better place to work or learn, and demonstrates exemplary support of the UCSD Principles of Community.
Professor Javidi has been a part of the UCSD community since 2005. In her research group, Javidi and her graduate students work to prove theorems about the performance limitations of modern information collection and communication systems, as well as build and test their own theoretical findings, when possible. In addition to researching and instructing in the ECE Department, she directs the Advanced Networking Science Lab and is an active member of the Centers of Information Theory and Applications, Wireless Communications, Networked Systems, and Integrated Access Network.
A ceremony will be held on Thursday, March 3, 2016, 2:00 - 3:30 p.m. at the Price Center West Ballroom to recognize all of the 2015 Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action and Diversity Award Recipients.
Arlington, Va., Jan. 29, 2016 – This year, the Microsystems Technology Office (MTO) hosted the Young Faculty Award Program (YFA) at DARPA in Arlington, Virginia. The objective of the DARPA FYA Program is to identify and engage rising research stars in junior faculty positions at academic and non-profit research institutions, and expose them to the Department of Defense (DoD) needs, as well as DARPA’s program development process. The YFA program provides funding, mentoring and industry and DoD contacts to awardees early in their careers so they may develop their research ideas in the context of DoD needs. The long-term goal of the YFA program is to develop the next generation of academic scientists, engineers and mathematicians in key disciplines who will focus a significant portion of their careers on DoD and national security issues. As leader of the Energy-Efficient Microsystems Lab at UC San Diego, Prof. Mercier endeavors to imagine, create, prototype, and test integrated microsystems for applications that can only be realized through extreme miniaturization of electronic devices.
San Francisco, Calif., Feb. 1, 2016 – ECE Professor Ian Galton has received ISSCC 2015 Lewis Winner Award for Outstanding Paper, for the paper entitled “A Highly-Digital Frequency Synthesizer Using Ring-Oscillator Frequency-to-Digital Conversion and Noise Cancellation.” The award was presented at the International Solid-States Circuits Conference, which took place in San Francisco, CA from January 31 through February 4 and included tutorials, forums, panels, technical sessions, and short courses on a variety of topics relating to circuits, IoT, and current advances in both technology and the associated marketplace.
Professor Galton’s awarded paper presents an FDC-PLL that avoids preexisting limitations by implementing the functionality of a charge pump and ADC with a simple dual-mode ring oscillator (DMRO) and digital logic. The paper also demonstrates a new quantization noise cancellation (QNC) technique that relaxes the fundamental bandwidth versus quantization noise tradeoff inherent to most fractional-TV PLLs. In addition to serving as an instructor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, Galton manages the Integrated Signal Processing Group at UCSD, whose research objective is to “generate enabling technology for highly integrated, low-cost, communication systems.”
San Diego, Calif., Jan. 7, 2016 – The National Science Foundation’s CAREER Program annually offers prestigious awards, in the form of grants, in support of junior faculty members who “exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations.” The CAREER award is typically bestowed upon individuals whose work helps to build a firm foundation for a lifetime of leadership in integrating education and research.
This year, ECE faculty member Boubacar Kante was selected to receive a CAREER Award for his project proposal entitled “Bound State in the Continuum Lasers.” Classified under the NSF’s division of electrical communications and cyber systems, the project aims to “investigate and develop for the first time a novel type of laser that exploits a novel confinement method for light inspired by early theoretical works in quantum mechanics.” Its accomplishments will range from the development of novel light sources for communication, sensing, and imaging to enhanced understanding regarding the creation of these sources, as well as the satisfaction of numerous requirements of photonics devices including small footprint, low power consumption, and enhanced light-matter interaction.
The abstract for the awarded project also highlights its rigorous educational and outreach activities, including training specialists in nanophotonics, student training in classroom and laboratory settings, and outreach activities geared towards underrepresented communities from high-school to graduate levels with an emphasis on veterans and African-Americans.
La Jolla, Calif., Jan. 7, 2016 – Along with fourteen other UC San Diego faculty members—and two other Jacob’s School faculty—ECE researcher and professor Michel Yip was featured as the leading figure of one of the university’s “Big Ideas for 2016.” Yip joined the ECE faculty at the beginning of the academic year (Fall 2015) after receiving his PhD from Stanford University. His research focuses on developing high-performance robotics that achieve dexterous and agile behaviors. Yip's proposed work featured in “Big Ideas” involves employing his expertise in robotics and controls to enhance surgeons’ capabilities:
Build robots that provide surgeons with super-human capabilities
Michael Yip, professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and director of the Advanced Robotics and Controls Lab
The practice of surgery has only ever been as good as the skills of the surgeon. Even the best surgeons are limited by what their own hands are able to achieve and can still make mistakes. But technology in this age is giving rise to robotics systems that are equipped with more capabilities and can perform various tasks with more precision than humans could ever achieve. "We routinely see popular media portray superheroes like Iron Man using robotics as a means of delivering massive power and destruction, and yet the reality is that robotics has the ability to improve the precision and delicate touch of surgeons beyond what their own hands can do alone," says Yip. "I invite San Diego researchers and industry to work with me to develop new robot-assistive devices and systems that will provide surgeons with super-human abilities—to navigate the body remotely and access anatomies they could not previously reach, to have augmented reality ‘X-ray vision’ to visualize subsurface lesions, and to perform surgeries with robotically enhanced, micromillimeter precision."
To view other “Big Ideas” featured in the article, click here.
San Diego, Calif., Dec. 11, 2015 – Professor Stojan Radic of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department has recently published an article in Science entitled “Subnoise detection of a fast random event,” along with co-authors Vahid Ataie, D. Esman, Bill Kuo and Nikola Alic. Professor Radic has been a UC San Diego faculty member since November of 2003, after receiving his Ph.D. in optics from The Institute of Optics, gaining a worldwide reputation while working in industry, and holding a chaired position at Duke University. Radic is interested in all-optical processing schemes and their use in present and future optical communication networks. His recent research is focused on parametric processes in high confinement fiber and semiconductor devices.
Radic’s “Subnoise detection of a fast random event,” was accepted for publication by Science on October 12, 2015 and appears in the December 2015 issue. In the paper, Radic and his co-authors show “that a fast, randomly occurring event can be detected and extracted from a noisy background without conventional averaging.” The detector described in the paper proved capable of receiving an isolated 80-picosecond pulse with an over 99% confidence level—even when accompanied by noise—by relying on instantaneous spectral cloning and a single-step, coherent field processor. The editor’s summary of the paper notes: “Discriminating signals within a noisy environment is an issue crucial to many disciplines, from observational astronomy to secure communication and imaging. If the signal is periodic, then averaging over many measurements can help enhance the signal-to-noise ratio. However, for signals that present as a single transient event, the detection capability has been limited. Ataie et al. developed a detector that can lift that limitation by combining signal cloning with frequency combs and signal-processing techniques. Their detector could detect signals buried within noise that would otherwise be undetectable.” The ideas introduced in Radic et. al’s publication regarding enhanced capabilities in extracting fast, subnoise events is expected to increase detection sensitivity in a variety of disciplines.
San Diego, Calif., December 8, 2015 -- The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) at the University of California, San Diego celebrated its 50th Anniversary on Friday, November 13. To commemorate the celebration, the ECE department hosted a booth during the UC San Diego Founders Day Festival and held the ECE 50th Anniversary Founders Day Event in the evening in Jacobs Hall. The evening event included a reception, student posters, the unveiling of the Electrical and Computer Engineering historical timeline, and talks by faculty, alumni and other special guests.“In the spirit of celebrating the 50th anniversary, on behalf of the department, I encourage the whole ECE community – students, staff, faculty, alumni and friends – to participate in activities throughout the 2015-16 academic year,” said Truong Nguyen, professor and chair of the electrical and computer engineering department at the Jacobs School of Engineering.Upcoming events that are part of the 50th anniversary celebration include the ITA Workshop from January 31–February 5, 2016; a Circuits/RF Symposium in February 2016; a Non-Volatile Memories Workshop in March 2016; the Jacobs School of Engineering Research Expo on April 14, 2016; the UC San Diego Center for Wireless Communications (CWC) 5G Forum in May 2016; and ECE Alumni Weekend in June 2016. The ECE 50th anniversary website will have details on these events and others as they become available. The historical timeline, presentation, video and photos from the ECE 50th Anniversary Founders Day event are currently available on the website.The ECE department has earned a world-class reputation for producing top-notch engineers for industry and academia. According to U.S. News, the ECE department at UC San Diego ranks 15th in the nation for electrical, electronic and communications engineering, and 13th in computer engineering. See the Jacobs School of Engineering Departmental Rankings here.Notable faculty and alumni from the ECE deparment include a Nobel laureate, a National Medal of Science recipient, three members in the National Academy of Sciences, seven members in the National Academy of Engineering, as well as founders of many companies including Linkabit, Qualcomm, ViaSat, Cymer, Peregrine Semiconductor, Entropic Communications, Ubiquiti Networks, Maxlinear, Sonrgy and Tomnod.
Electrical Engineering beginnings at UC San DiegoThe ECE department traces its roots back to the Applied Electrophysics department, which was established in 1965 under its founding chair Henry Booker. In 1968, the Applied Electrophysics department became the Applied Physics and Information Science department, which later transitioned to the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences in 1978.In 1987, this department split into the two departments we have today: the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) and the Department of Computer Science and Engineering (CSE). (See the full Jacobs School family tree here.)
La Jolla, Calif., Oct. 26, 2015 – Each year, the Jacobs School of Engineering asks departments to determine their best undergraduate teachers to be acknowledged with Best Teacher Awards. ECE also awards Best Teacher for graduate. This year the awards, including a $1,500 gift, were granted to Professor Shadi Dayeh for undergraduate teaching and Professor Vikash Gilja for graduate teaching.
Shadi Dayeh received his PhD in Electrical Engineering from UC San Diego in 2008, and joined the faculty of ECE at UCSD in November 2012. This academic year, Dayeh has been scheduled to teach the undergraduate courses ECE 135B, a class on Semiconductor Physics, and ECE 136L, a Microelectronics Laboratory. ECE 135B focuses on teaching students about the structure and operation of bipolar junction transistors, junction field-effect transistors, metal-oxide-semiconductor diodes and transistors, while 136L offers more hands-on opportunities for students to practice the fabrication of diodes and field effect transistors covering photolithography, oxidation, diffusion, thin film deposition, etching and evaluation of devices. Comments from some of his undergraduate students include:
“Professor Dayeh is by far one of the best Professors on campus! His teaching style takes a subject that is very daunting, and actually quite difficult, and manages to find a way to teach it very well...Thanks for making this class fun and interesting.”
“I have only seen a few other professors that come close to his level of passion for getting students interested in his subject and helping them succeed. It really shows in the quality of this class…Pay this man more!”
“Professor Shadi Dayeh is by far the best professor I have had at UCSD, and the one that truly exemplifies the image of a university professor.”
Dr. Vikash Gilja received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Stanford University in 2010. Professor Gilja’s research focuses on brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) with a specific interest in translating basic research into clinical applications. Using statistical signal processing, machine learning and real-time embedded systems, he develops BMIs that effectively use neural signals to control prosthetic devices for individuals with paralysis and neurodegenerative disease. More generally, he is interested in the development of diagnostic and therapeutic methods that leverage novel techniques and insights from neuroscience to better understand and address neurological and psychological disorders. His approach uses large scale datasets and closed loop control experiments with a variety of neural measurement techniques, including functional imaging and electrophysiology. At UC San Diego, he is using this multi-modal neural measurement approach with human participants to advance the engineering science of BMI and broaden their potential for clinical application.
During the fall quarter of 2015, Professor Gilja has instructed the graduate courses ECE 200 and ECE 299. ECE 200 is a conference course involving group discussion of research activities and progress of group members. ECE 299 is a course focused on a research initiative. Comments from some of his graduate students include:
“Great instructor, very clear on all the concepts and really helped students understand them.”
“Very good start to graduate-level course instruction.”
“Handled questions very well, making sure that side-tracks were brought back to the main focus of the day. Instructor’s jokes were also great!”
“Overall, excellent performance in keeping the class engaged.”
The ECE Department is pleased to honor these professors for inspiring students through skillfully sharing the knowledge and expertise they have gained through their own studies.
San Diego, Calif., September 8, 2015 -- Patrick Mercier is the first professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of California, San Diego to receive a Beckman Young Investigator (BYI) Award from the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation. Mercier, the co-director of the UC San Diego Center for Wearable Sensors, is one of eight researchers honored with the award in 2015.
While the BYI award typically honors chemistry and life sciences faculty, Mercier’s proposed work on cellular-scale bioelectronic sensing and energy harvesting devices can potentially enable the exploration of new frontiers in biology.
“Arnold Beckman was a remarkable inventor who was instrumental in building technologies for advanced medical diagnostics,” said Mercier. “He is someone who brought together good engineering practices and scientific research to help humanity. This is something I aspire to accomplish with my research.”
The BYI program, one of four award programs spearheaded by the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation, provides research grants to promising young faculty and aims to “foster the invention of methods, instruments and materials that will open up new avenues of research in science.”
The BYI program funds projects over four years with grants in the range of $750,000. Mercier is the first UC San Diego professor to win this award since 2008.
News source: www.jacobsschool.ucsd.edu
La Jolla, Calif., July 23, 2015 – ECE grad students Ashok Kodigala and Igor Federov have each been selected to be recipients of the Achievement Rewards for College Scientists (ARCS) Fellowship. The ARCS Fellowship is awarded annually to outstanding Ph.D. students who have a GPA of 3.5 or higher and are enrolled in the Ph.D. program of select STEM-focused fields. The scholarships primarily reward excellence in research, and selection is based chiefly on “the exceptional promise of the nominee to make a significant contribution to the advancement of science, and to the material and intellectual welfare of all people.”
La Jolla, Calif., July 19, 2015 – Electrical and Computer Engineering faculty members Gabriel Rebeiz, Drew Hall, Patrick Mercier and Young-Han Kim have won the DARPA N-Zero Program for their project “A Time-Frequency Sequenced Near-Zero-Power Wake-Up Receiver.” DARPA’s N-Zero program “aims to develop wireless, event-driven sensing capabilities that would allow physical, electromagnetic and other sensors to remain dormant—effectively asleep yet aware—until an event of interest awakens them.” Such capabilities aim to increase the life span of wireless sensors and decrease their battery size and maintenance costs. Thus, the N-Zero (“Near Zero Power”) Program solicited for a proposal to create “intelligent sensors that can process and detect RF and physical sensor signatures, consume less than 10 nW of power, and attain a low false alarm rate of 1 per hour or better in an urban environment.” Through their proposed project, Rebeiz, Hall, Mercier, and Kim will work to make DARPA’s vision a reality.
La Jolla, Calif., July 19, 2015 — The ECE Department joins in congratulating Yu Hwa Lo, Shaya Fainman, Eric Fullerton, and Shaochen Chen on receiving the NSF NNCI (National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure) grant. The award, provided by the National Science Foundation, is granted to an individual university user facility that is competitively selected based on its “capabilities and instrumentation addressing current and anticipated future user needs across the broad areas of nanoscale science, engineering, and technology.” Through this grant, UCSD will become one of the major NNCI sites in the national infrastructure.
La Jolla, Calif., May 14, 2015 – Electrical and Computer Engineering Professor Boubacar Kante has been selected to receive the Hellman Fellowship this academic year. Now in its 21st year of supporting young faculty, The Hellman Fellowship is designed to provide financial support and encouragement to scholars in the core disciplines who show capacity for great distinction in their research and creative activities.
2015-2016 Hellman Fellows include 12 UC San Diego faculty members who were awarded a total of approximately $500,000. The awards will provide early-career funding to promising members of UCSD’s academic community as they progress toward tenure. 7 UCSD Hellman Scholars were chosen in the fields of Biological Sciences, Engineering, Marine Sciences and Physical Sciences—ECE’s Boubacar Kante being among them. Kante’s research is dedicated to unraveling and exploiting the possibilities of using electromagnetic waves to achieve novel functions and devices in fields such as global energy, defense, and medicine.
Gabriel Rebeiz receives the 2015 IEEE Antenna and Propagation Harold A. Wheeler Applications Prize Paper Award
Along with his co-authors Nathan R. Labadie and Satish Kumar Sharma, ECE researcher and faculty member Gabriel M. Rebeiz was a conferred the annual Harold A. Wheeler Applications Prize Paper Award. The honored paper, entitled “A Circularly Polarized Multiple Radiating Mode Microstrip Antenna for Satellite Receive Applications,” presented research that is “part of a larger effort to understand the potential benefits of antenna apertures supporting multiple simultaneous radiating modes.” The paper also presented a novel pattern reconfigurable antenna designed for satellite receive applications in L-band, as well as demonstrated full hemispherical steering of a single beam null and conical steering of a single beam peak.
IEEE grants its Wheeler Award to the authors of the best applications paper published in the IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ANTENNAS AND PROPAGATION during the previous year (2014). In addition to his professorial work, Rebeiz is an IEEE Fellow and serves as the chair for the Wireless Communications Industry. His research focuses, among other things, on design of silicon RFICs for microwave and millimeter-wave systems with a specialty on phased arrays and low power circuits.
UCSD and TowerJazz Collaboration Demonstrates First 5G 256-Element 60 GHz Silicon Wafer-Scale Phased Array Transmitter
Newport Beach and San Diego, Calif., May 14, 2015 – TowerJazz, the global specialty foundry leader, and The University of California, San Diego (UCSD), a recognized leader for microwave, millimeter-wave and mixed-signal RFICs, today announced they have collaborated to demonstrate the first 256-element (16 x 16) wafer-scale phased array transmitter with integrated high-efficiency antennas operating at 56-65 GHz frequency range. First time success was achieved for the wafer-scale RFIC using TowerJazz’s own proprietary models, kit and the mmWave capabilities of its 0.18-micron SiGe BiCMOS process, SBC18H3. In addition, TowerJazz proprietary methods allowed for very large chip area with an extremely high level of integration. The phased-array system-on-a-chip (SoC) targets the emerging 5G high-performance wireless standard which will aim for greater than 10 Gbps (gigabits per second) peak data-rate communication. The array has beamforming capabilities that include independent amplitude and phase control for all 256 different antenna elements. By developing this wafer-scale chip, UCSD and TowerJazz have successfully demonstrated highly scalable RF-IC transmitters for 5G phased array applications. The collaboration of the wafer-scale phased array chip was partially funded through collaboration with DARPA.
Phased arrays allow the electronic steering of an antenna beam in any direction and with high antenna gain by controlling the phase at each antenna element. The radiation beam can be “moved in space” using entirely electronic means through control of the phase and amplitude at each antenna element used to generate the beam. This beam steering technique is much more compact and much faster than mechanically steered arrays. Furthermore, phased arrays allow the creation of deep nulls in the radiation pattern to mitigate strong interference signals from several different directions. They have been in use since the 1950s in defense applications and have seen limited use in commercial systems due to their relatively high cost. UCSD’s design and utilization of TowerJazz wafer processes are targeted to greatly reduce the cost of phased arrays especially at millimeter-wave frequencies for 5G communication systems.
“This is yet another leap forward in the area of phased arrays that we are proud to announce. We have a track record of successful collaboration with TowerJazz and the ability to bring this innovative design from UCSD to market depends strongly on TowerJazz’s SiGe BiCMOS foundry process which enables lower-cost phased arrays through integration of multiple circuit functions and high efficiency antennas on the same silicon chip,” said Dr. Gabriel M. Rebeiz, Distinguished ECE Professor of Electrical Engineering at UCSD, the lead professor on this chip.
“We believe the results achieved by UCSD’s 5G 60 GHz phased array transmitter again demonstrate the remarkable teamwork between TowerJazz, UCSD and DARPA, to provide novel capabilities and technologies to both the aerospace and defense community as well as commercial markets,” said Dr. David Howard, TowerJazz’s Executive Director and Fellow & CoPI for the DAHI Program. “It is satisfying to have our long term collaboration and vision bear fruit, as shown in this demonstration, and to bring attention to our enabling role in emerging 5G markets and standards.”
The wafer-scale 256-element SiGe BiCMOS SoC phased-array is 42x42 mm2 and combines the 60 GHz source, amplifiers, distribution network, phase shifters, voltage controlled amplifiers, and high-efficiency on-chip antennas (16 x 16 elements), allowing record performance for a new generation of high-performance phased arrays for the 60 GHz band (56-65 GHz). Such an advancement better serves the needs of the greater than $500M emerging market of 5G 60 GHz base-stations with beam-forming capabilities and Gbps data rates. The antennas are integrated on-chip, which removes the expensive and lossy transitions and distribution network between the phased array and the off-chip antennas.
This wafer-scale phased array with 256 radiating elements, together with all the necessary CMOS control circuits such as dual SPI control (serial parallel interface), is capable of electronic beam scanning to +/-50 degrees in all planes – the most of any mm-wave phased-array antenna to date. A measured EIRP (equivalent isotropically radiated power) of 45 dBm at 60 GHz was achieved from the wafer-scale array at an operating temperature of 95-100oC, congruent with base-station temperatures, and within the FCC’s EIRP power limits for 60 GHz band. The architecture could be scaled to 512 (16x32) or 1024 (32x32) elements due to on-chip antenna integration and the wafer-scale integration of multiple reticles on a single chip.
La Jolla, Calif., May 19, 2015 – ECE Professor Young-Han Kim was chosen to receive the James L. Massey Research and Teaching Award for Young Scholars this year. This award is funded by the IEEE Information Theory Society, and recognizes outstanding achievement in research and teaching by young scholars in the Information Theory community. Each year, only one recipient is chosen from a pool of researchers and instructors in the field, all of whom must be 40 years or younger. In determining the winner of the award, equal weight is given to the research and teaching contributions of the nominee. Professor Kim was selected for notable impact on the field of Information Theory as evidenced by publications, patents, product development, and research awards, as well as his new and innovative teaching methods, curriculum development with inclusion of current research, and innovative short courses and tutorials in fields of interest to the Information Theory community.
Young-Han Kim primarily works on two important challenges for today's high-speed, high-volume information processing systems – how to describe information efficiently and how to transmit it reliably in the presence of noise and interference. With the ultimate goal of providing guidelines that can be put into practice, Dr. Kim explores fundamental principles behind a variety of applications in communication, networking, compression, prediction, and data storage. Professor Kim has also taught a variety of courses at UCSD and has mentored students from undergraduate to post-doctorate levels. This academic year, he has served as the instructor for courses on topics including Information Theory and Coding, Random Processes, and Network Information Theory, as well as a Graduate Seminar in Communication Theory and Systems.
ECE Professor and researcher Drew Hall has been selected as a recipient of the 2015 award from California research grants program, Cal-BRAIN. The Cal-BRAIN award honored only 16 of the 126 proposals that were received from 24 different non-profit research institutions from across California. The award recognizes “efforts around the state to create new technologies capable of measuring brain activity in greater depth, breadth and detail than is currently possible.” Cal-BRAIN Awards were selected based on criteria including scientific quality, significance, innovation, and scalability.
As a selected recipient, Professor Drew Hall will receive an inaugural seed grant of $120,000 to pursue his research in “Magnetic Monitoring of Neural Activity using Magnetoresistive Nanosensors.” Hall’s project aims to apply his expertise in integrated circuits for bioelectronics, biosensors, lab-on-a-chip devices, and other biomedical systems to develop more efficient brain monitoring devices. His group proposes “a magnetoresistive (MR) nanosensor capable of detecting low-magnetic fields at room temperature without loss of spatio-temporal information,” which would be able to provide a non-contact method for determining neural interactions while remaining naturally immune to changes in the underlying structure due to scar tissue. As a Cal-BRAIN recipient, Professor Hall will be further empowered to create new technologies that will revolutionize our understanding of the brain.
San Diego, Calif., April 16, 2015 – The 9th annual IEEE International Conference on Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) took place this year from April 15-17 at the San Diego Convention Center. Along with providing a platform for experts in both industry and academia to share technical research and savvy, this event also presented the Best Paper Award to what IEEE RFID committee members deemed the most impressive of the research papers submitted, accepted, at presented at the conference. Papers were evaluated and selected based on “originality, importance of the problem, technical merit, clarity, and the potential impact of the results.”
IEEE’s Conference of RFID is highly selective to begin with, accepting for presentation only about one-third of papers submitted. Nominations for the Best Paper Award were limited to a mere 4 of the 26 presented papers. The winner, announced at the opening plenary the morning of April 16th, was a paper written by ECE Professor Alexander Vardy and Ph.D alumnus Hessam Mahdavifar. Entitled "Coding for Tag Collision Recovery,” the paper introduces “the new notion of singulation code.” Co-author of the winning piece Professor Vardy is a leading expert in coding theory. His research in the ECE department at UCSD is broadening the field’s understanding of the uses as well as the limitations of error-correcting codes in encoding data for transmission and storage.
La Jolla, Calif., March 20, 2015 – Professor of Advanced Optical Technologies Shaya Fainman was selected to be a recipient of the Emmett N. Leith Medal; an award granted by The Optical Society (OSA) that recognizes significant contributions to the field of optical information processing, including sensing and analog signal processing as well as computing (classical & quantum) and optical storage. Professor Fainman is being recognized for “extension of Fourier optics methods to the femtosecond and nanometer regimes.”
As director of the Ultrafast and Nanoscale Optics Group, Fainman focuses much of his research on optical system processing. Additionally, his group studies and develops photonic crystals, 3-D holographic optical storage for image processing, artificial dielectric properties of nanostructures, transparent photonic switching fabric and networks, diffractive optics with multifunctionality, as well as quantum communications and cryptography for photonic network security and privacy.
In selecting the recipients, the OSA awards committee reviewed nominations including curriculum vitae, four letters of recommendation, and a statement of career accomplishment related to the award criteria. This year, 2015, the committee granted only 15 awards. The Emmett N. Leith Medal received by Fainman takes into consideration both the theoretical and conceptual breakthroughs made by the recipient’s research as well as the practical applications of their work.
“OSA is greatly honored to recognize these leaders in the field of optics,” Elizabeth Rogan, CEO of The Optical Society notes. “The recipients have demonstrated an expertise and leadership in their chosen field and have made significant contributions to the understanding of optics and photonics. OSA congratulates them on their outstanding achievements.”
La Jolla, Calif., Feb. 20, 2015 – UCSD’s chapter of Eta Kappa Nu (IEEE-HKN), Kappa Psi, has been selected by the IEEE-HKN board of governors to receive the 2013-2014 Outstanding Chapter award. Eta Kappa Nu, IEEE’s student honor society, includes students, alumni, and professionals who have demonstrated exceptional academic and professional accomplishments in IEEE fields. Members are selected on the basis of scholastic standing, character, and leadership. At UC San Diego, HKN is advised by faculty member Laurence Milstein, and provides free tutoring as well as hosts a variety of workshops and events to promote technical, professional, and academic development within the ECE department.
The award being granted to the Kappa Psi chapter at UCSD recognizes the excellence of the chapter’s administration and programs. Kappa Psi was one of 23 HKN Chapters selected for their outstanding performance and the value they bring to their members, peers, and University. “Recipients are selected on the basis of their annual Chapter report,” notes IEEE-HKN President Evelyn Hirt. “Winning Chapter reports not only showcase their Chapter's activities in an individualized manner, they provided multiple views and instances of their work, which really brought their Chapter's activities to life.” The evaluation committee for the Outstanding Chapter Awards pay particular attention to whether or not a Chapter’s activities improve professional development, raise instructional and institutional standards, encourage scholarship and creativity, provide a public service, and generally further the established goals of IEEE-HKN.
The IEEE-HKN award reception will be held on March 16, 2015 at the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department Heads Association (ECEDHA) Annual Conference in South Carolina.
San Diego, Calif., Feb. 28, 2015 – Professor Gabriel M. Rebeiz – IEEE Fellow, Wireless Communications Industry Chair, and ECE instructor – is the selected recipient of the 2014 Kuwait Prize in Applied Sciences. The Kuwait Prize, granted by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences (KFAS), is awarded annually in six different categories: Basic Sciences, Applied Sciences, Economic and Social Sciences, Arts and Letters, and Arabic and Islamic Scientific Heritage. Each category is assigned an area of specialization that varies annually, and the 2014 award in Applies Sciences was given the specialization of “Engineering Sciences.” Recipients of the award receive a cash award, a Gold medal, a KFAS shield, a certificate of recognition to one or more of the citizens of Kuwait, and are also asked to give a lecture on their studies/contributions to their field.
The Kuwait Foundation notes on their website that “KFAS prizes are designed to recognize intellectual achievements that serve the interest of scientific advancement and support efforts to raise the standard of culture.” Professor Rebeiz’s specialties and research interests include RFICs for phased arrays, mm-wave and THz RFIC, automotive radars, RF MEMS, reconfigurable front-end systems, tunable filters, tunable antennas, on-chip antennas, and sensor systems. He also introduced MEMS and micromachining to the RF/microwave field, and has developed several novel components (tunable filters, wideband switches, low-loss phase shifters, high-Q varactors) using this technology. The ECE department joins in congratulating Gabriel on this honor.
La Jolla, Calif., Jan. 28, 2015 – Each year, the UC San Diego Chancellor's Associates recognize faculty members for their scholarship as well as overall contributions to the University and the community with a citation and honorarium, via the annual Faculty Excellence Awards. This year (2014-15), ECE faculty member Laurence B. Milstein was recognized for his dedication and success as a graduate instructor. Milstein has been on the UCSD faculty since 1976, and is a former chairman of the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science department. He is currently the instructor for courses on digital communication (ECE 258A/B) and on communication systems (ECE 154A/B). His research focuses on digital communications theory and wireless communications, with a specialization in spread-spectrum systems. Other areas of expertise include signal transmission, bandwidth considerations, and broadband wireless.
The Associates’ Selection Committee accepted nominations for the Excellence Awards throughout the month of November. The committee selected the winning nominees based off the depth, quality, strength, and enthusiasm of nominations, as well as the receipt of input from multiple nominators. Formal presentation of awards to Professor Milstein and five other excellent professors will be conveyed at the Chancellor's Associates Faculty Excellence Awards on Thursday, April 2, 2015. The event will be held from 5:30pm-8:00pm at Atkinson Hall in the CalIT2 building.
San Diego, Calif., Jan. 5, 2015 – Each year, the National Science Foundation’s CAREER Program offers prestigious awards – in the form of grants – in support of junior faculty members who “exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations.” The CAREER award is typically bestowed upon individuals whose work helps to build a firm foundation for a lifetime of leadership in integrating education and research.
Drew Hall, Assistant Professor at ECE, submitted a proposal to NSF on “Ultrasensitive Point-of-Care Diagnostics using Magnetic Biosensors.” This proposal was selected to be a 2015 recipient of the NSF CAREER award. As the title suggests, the proposed research will explore ultrasensitive magnetic sensing technology to enable applications such as point-of-care disease diagnoses and wearable medical sensors.
NSF recognizes that the proposed project will have a transformative effect on the healthcare environment as a whole. Applications of Professor Hall’s research will empower individuals to quantitatively diagnose diseases both earlier and at the point-of-care, which will ultimately lead to better treatment outcomes and reduced costs. The device can also provide a means for preventative healthcare with increased portability and wireless infrastructure, as well as the ability to track therapy and disease progression. On a larger scale, his proposal paves the way toward enabling low-cost diagnostic platforms for resource-limited settings, such as developing countries. Hall's winning CAREER proposal “describes a synergistic research and education plan that will support the PI in progressing towards his career goals. The education plan includes components that target pre-college, both undergraduate and graduate students, and emphasizes inclusion of students from underrepresented minority groups.”
Dr. Hall received the B.S. degree in computer engineering with honors from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 2005 along with M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from Stanford University in 2008 and 2012. Professor Hall teaches Introduction to Active Circuit Design (ECE 102), which introduces students to nonlinear active circuits design, nonlinear device models for diodes, bipolar and field-effect transistors, linearization of device models, and small-signal equivalent circuits. In this course, students are able to simulate circuit designs by computer and test them in the laboratory. While students are consistently challenged by Professor Hall’s coursework, they recognize his skill at presenting material, appreciate his availability, and are inspired by his devotion and intellect. Some comments from his students include:
“Prof Hall has been one of the best professors I've had since I transferred to UCSD two and a half years ago. Everything about his course was spot on. Lecture and lecture notes were well formatted and maintained good continuity. Podcast was a huge help. Kept on schedule and held his TAs to a high standard. He structured his class to help the student succeed.”
“His use of ‘TED discussion board’ is amazing.”
“Professor Hall is by far one of the best professors I've ever had at UCSD. He is very articulate, and his lectures and notes are very concise and effective. The homework is time consuming and challenging, but definitely helps a lot in understanding the material. In addition, I really appreciate the fact that Professor Hall constantly emphasizes concepts (especially in lecture), but gives examples during discussion.”
“One of the best professors I've had at UCSD. Explains the material thoroughly and connects ideas to bigger pictures and different classes.”
“He is the best ECE professor I have had at UCSD so far. I highly recommend him.”
“I am about to graduate, and he is one of the best professors I had since I have been at UCSD. He truly cares about his students, teaches in a way that is easy to understand, and seems to enjoy teaching.”
“This professor was one of the best professors I've had the privilege to be a student of. He promotes learning. He is a joy in office hours and his knowledge on the material seems to have no bounds.”
“His class was the only one I didn't skip this quarter!”
Professor Alon Orlitsky, recipient of the graduate teaching award, joined the UCSD faculty in 1997. He is the founding director of UCSD's Information Theory and Applications Center and holds the QUALCOMM Endowed Chair in Information Theory and Its Applications. Orlitsky received his Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University in 1986, and his M.Sc., also from Stanford, in 1982. He is currently the instructor of a graduate course on Information Theory (ECE 255A), which introduces students to basic concepts of information theory, source coding theorems, capacity, and noisy-channel coding theorem. Student comments about Prof. Orlitsky's graduate teaching in ECE 255A include the following:
“Great professor—he always tried to involve the class.”
“Orlitsky's lectures felt more like discussions. He would always take the time to ensure that everyone understood what we were learning.”
“I really enjoyed the way Professor Orlitsky organized the material of the course. It greatly helped developing intuition for these types of problems.
“Great course, great professor. But really hard.”
“Brilliant professor. Extremely knowledgeable.”
Both Professor Hall and Professor Orlitsky have demonstrated excellence and skill in academic instruction, and ECE is pleased to honor all that they have brought to the department and to their students.
San Diego, Calif., Dec. 15, 2014 — 130 experts from academia, government and industry met at the University of California, San Diego for the recent CWC 5G Forum on Next-Generation Wireless Systems. More than two dozen presentations were made to share insights, best practices and remaining research questions about the emerging systems and applications that will drive 5G user experience. The university’s Center for Wireless Communication served as a keystone for the event, and several ECE professors shared their ideas about the future of wireless systems. “Our mission at CWC,” ECE Professor Alon Orlitsky stated, “is to prepare for the next decade and help define and design the next generation of wireless systems – from the ubiquitous network infrastructure, to the powerful wireless interface, to the yet unthinkable applications that the next consumer generation will take for granted.”
Indeed, speakers at this forum – which included individuals from UC San Diego, Qualcomm, Viasat, Nokia, Intel, Mitsubishi, Samsung, InterDigital, Brocade, Ericsson, Keysight, Yahoo!, China Mobile and NTT DOCOMO – considered concepts, proposals, and issues that will soon weave into the technological fabric of our lives. Points of discussion at the forum indicated that 5G will require higher data rates, massive device connectivity, higher system capacity, reduced latency, energy savings, and cost reduction. The complex problems presented by the anticipated 5G system do not offer simple solutions, but there is confidence that, through collaboration, 5G development can be guided with confidence and efficacy.
To read more about the CWC 5G Forum, visit calit2.net
San Diego, CA, December 15, 2014 – Boubacar Kanté, an assistant professor in electrical and computer engineering at UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering, and his postdoctoral researcher Thomas Lepetit have demonstrated a new and more efficient way to trap light, using a phenomenon called bound states in the continuum (BIC).
Kanté and Lepetit described their BIC experiment online in the rapid communication section of journal Physical Review B. The study directly addresses one of the major challenges currently facing nanophotonics, as researchers look for ways to trap and use light for optical computing circuits and other devices such as tiny switches.
“The goal in the future is to make a computer that performs all kinds of operations using light, not electronics, because electronic circuits are relatively slow. We expect that an optical computer would be faster by three to four orders of magnitude.” Kanté said. “But to do this, we have to be able to stop light and store it in some kind of cavity for an extensive amount of time.”
To slow down and eventually localize light, researchers rely on cavities that trap light in the same way that sound is trapped in a cave. Waves continuously bounce off the walls of the cavity and only manage to escape after finding the narrow passage out. However, most current cavities are quite leaky, and have multiple ways out.
Through their research, these ECE researchers sought a way around the leak problem by designing a metamaterials BIC device consisting of a rectangular metal waveguide and ceramic light scatterer. Instead of limiting the size and number of passages where light can escape the cavity, the cavity’s design produces destructive interferences for the light waves. Light is allowed to escape, but the multiple waves that do so through the different passages end up cancelling each other. The device tested by the UC San Diego researchers marks the first time BIC has been observed in metamaterials, and contains even smaller cavities, Kanté informed.
The difference is important, he explains, “because if you want to make compact photonic devices in the future, you need to be able to store light in this subwavelength system.” Moreover, earlier researchers had reported observing only one BIC within their systems. Lepetit and Kanté observed multiple bound states in their system, which make the light trap more robust and less vulnerable to outside disruptions.
Trapping light via BIC will likely have a variety of other applications beyond circuitry and data storage. Because the system can hold light for an extended time, it may enhance certain nonlinear interactions between light and matter. These types of interactions can be important in applications such as biosensors that screen small molecules, or compact solar cells.
La Jolla, Calif., Nov. 18, 2014 – On November 18, 2014, a new resource became available to students at Jacob’s School of Engineering. The ECE Tutoring Center and IDEA’s Study Lab has celebrated its grand opening, and is now a fully functioning service for scholars of all levels – serving both undergraduate and graduate engineering students. The IDEA Student Center (center for Inclusion, Diversity, Excellence, and Advancement) hopes this new study center will help in their goal of promoting a supportive learning environment for diverse engineering students at UC San Diego. In all its pursuits, IDEA’s values diverse experiences, and encourages all engineering students to become fully engaged, technological leaders and well-rounded citizens.
The center offers an assortment of opportunities for students to apply their engineering skills outside the classroom, to gain invaluable leadership skills, to make a difference in their communities, and to diversity undergraduate
student organizations. The recently inaugurated ECE Tutoring Center will help
the IDEA Center achieve these goals by serving in part as the IDEA’s Study Lab.The tutoring center is located at Jacobs Hall 5101 (EBU1), and provides a space for engineering students to study, as well as obtain free tutoring provided by UCSD’s Engineering Honor Societies, Tau Beta Pi and Eta Kappa Nu. The Study Lab offers tutoring for students in a variety of subjects in engineering. Stu
dents who wish to seek assistance in courses or at times that are not listed on the IDEA’s tutoring schedule can put in a request, and easily obtain the help they need. For Electrical and Computer Engineering students, the ECE Tutoring Center offers free walk-in tutoring daily for a range of specific courses (ECE 15, 25, 35, 45, 65, 100, 101, 102, 103), and appointments and group study sessions are also available upon request. More information about ECE tutoring can be obtained by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The ECE Tutoring Center/IDEA’s Study Lab provides engineering students with a valuable tool that can help them to succeed in academia and beyond.
Piscataway, New Jersey, USA, January 2015: Young-Han Kim, Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, at the University of California, San Diego has been named an IEEE Fellow. He is being recognized for contributions to feedback communication and network information theory. Young-Han’s research has addressed new challenges that have arisen in the evolution of communication networks. Through an investigation of new paradigms of interactive feedback communication over networks, as well as the development of a common set of conceptual, mathematical, and algorithmic tools for the emerging convergence of computation, control, and communication over networks, Professor Kim has provided the scientific and engineering community with a deeper understanding and capability in these areas.
The IEEE Grade of Fellow is conferred by the IEEE Board of Directors upon a person with an outstanding record of accomplishments in any of the IEEE fields of interest. The total number selected in any one year cannot exceed one-tenth of one percent of the total voting membership. IEEE Fellow is the highest grade of membership and is recognized by the technical community as a prestigious honor and an important career achievement.
With over a dozen journal publications and co-authorship of a comprehensive text concerning Network Information Theory,Young-Han has become a leading academic in his field. Professor Kim has received an array of awards and honors for his research, including the 2008 NSF Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award, the 2009 US-Israel Binational Science Foundation Bergmann Memorial Award, and the 2012 IEEE Information Theory Paper Award. He is currently on the Editorial Board of the IEEE Transactions on Information Theory, serving as an Associate Editor for Shannon theory. He is also serving as a Distinguished Lecturer for the IEEE Information Theory Society.
The IEEE is the world’s leading professional association for advancing technology for humanity. Through its 400,000 members in 160 countries, the IEEE is a leading authority on a wide variety of areas ranging from aerospace systems, computers and telecommunications to biomedical engineering, electric power and consumer electronics.
Dedicated to the advancement of technology, the IEEE publishes 30 percent of the world’s literature in the electrical and electronics engineering and computer science fields, and has developed more than 900 active industry standards. The association also sponsors or co-sponsors nearly 400 international technical conferences each year. If you would like to learn more about IEEE or the IEEE Fellow Program, please visit www.ieee.org.
San Diego, Calif., Nov. 7, 2014 – The Radar for Pedestrian Safety, developed by Electrical Engineers at the Univ. of California, San Diego (in conjunction with Toyota Technical Center, Fujitsu-Ten, and the Michigan Technological Research Institute), was recognized by R&D Magazine as one of the top 100 technologies introduced during the past year. The 52nd Annual R&D 100 Banquet and Awards Presentation, honoring the 2014 winners, took place at the Bellagio Hotel, Las Vegas, NV, on Friday, November 7, 2014. Many of the innovations recognized among the R&D 100, including Taxol anticancer drug (1993), lab on a chip (1996), and HDTV (1998), have gone on to become household names. The hardware essential to the awarded radar builds on years of previous research in phased-array technology conducted by UC San Diego electrical engineering professor Gabriel Rebeiz. According to R&D Magazine, vehicle manufacturers are increasingly adopting sensor technology as it improves as a means to reduce losses resulting from motor accidents. While several types of radar-enabled early warning and pedestrian sensing systems have been developed, Toyota Motor Corp. is the first to manufacture one using phased-array technology. Automotive Phased Array Radar (APAR) satisfies the requirements for widespread use in vehicle safety systems while also providing a wide 100-degree sensing arc capable of effectively detecting pedestrians.
Twitter #DataGrants award to UC San Diego and CUNY to measure happiness from tweeted images in U.S. cities
A team of researchers from the University of California, San Diego and The Graduate Center, City University of New York (CUNY) is one of only six groups to win one of Twitter’s inaugural #DataGrants. To do so, they beat out more than 1,300 rival proposals from around the world. A 2012 Ph.D. from ECE, Mehrdad Yazdani, is the PI for the joint QI/CUNY team.
The possibility of manipulating magnetic systems without applied magnetic fields have attracted growing attention over the past fifteen years. The low-power manipulation of the magnetization, preferably at ultrashort timescales, has become a fundamental challenge with implications for future magnetic information memory and storage technologies. Here we explore the optical manipulation of the magnetization in engineered magnetic materials. We demonstrate that all-optical helicity-dependent switching (AO-HDS) can be observed not only in selected rare earth–transition metal (RE–TM) alloy films but also in a much broader variety of materials, including RE–TM alloys, multilayers and heterostructures. We further show that RE-free Co–Ir-based synthetic ferrimagnetic heterostructures designed to mimic the magnetic properties of RE–TM alloys also exhibit AO-HDS. These results challenge present theories of AO-HDS and provide a pathway to engineering materials for future applications based on all-optical control of magnetic order.
ECE student Ryan Aguinaldo selected to represent UC San Diego at the 2014 Catalyzing Advocacy in Science and Engineering Workshop
Ryan Aguinaldo has been selected as one of two graduate students to represent UC San Diego at CASE 2014: Catalyzing Advocacy in Science and Engineering, a three-day workshop developed by AAAS in Washington, DC. He will interact with members of the United States Congress and their staff to learn about the federal budget process, policy making, and effective science advocacy and communication at the national level.
Ryan is a senior graduate student in the Micro/Nano-Photonics Group led by Professor Shayan Mookherjea. His research on silicon photonic devices for optical networks is valuable to the Center for Integrated Access Networks, an NSF Engineering Research Center. Ryan has been President of the ECE Graduate Student Council and an officer of the student chapters of IEEE, OSA, and SPIE. The United Nations has been declared 2015 as the “International Year of Light” and Ryan will be contributing to raising awareness of optics and photonics research on Capitol Hill.
Prof. Charles Tu received an IEEE Region 6 Outstanding Educator Award. Region 6 comprises of western U.S., including Alaska and Hawaii. The citation reads "for exceptional leadership in engineering education and dedication to the IEEE student branches of the San Diego Section".
Professors Zhaowei Liu, Eric Fullerton and their students have taken the first steps in a project to develop fast-blinking LED systems for underwater optical communications
In a recent article in Nature Nanotechnology, Liu and colleagues show that an artificial metamaterial can increase the light intensity and “blink speed” of a fluorescent light-emitting dye molecule. The nanopatterned layers of silver and silicon in the new material sped up the molecule’s blink rate to 76 times faster than normal, while producing an 80-fold increase in its brightness. To read more go to: http://www.jacobsschool.ucsd.edu/news/news_releases/release.sfe?id=1471.
Prof. Shaya Fainman's lab is featured on SPIE website. To read more go to http://spie.org/x104885.xml
Unique to Thurgood Marshall College, the Marshall Mentor Program is a year-long program providing transfer students the opportunity to work closely with faculty who will share their knowledge and experience in order to better equip students for study at UCSD. Prof. Nguyen has very generously been participating in the Marshall Mentor Program this year serving as a mentor to two of their students.
Prof. John G. Proakis received the IEEE James H. Mulligan, Jr. Education Medal for contributions to electrical engineering education through influential textbooks and inspiring leadership in integrating research and education.
Recognizing the achievements of its members is an important part of the mission of the IEEE. Each year, following a rigorous evaluation procedure, the IEEE Fellow Committee recommends a select group of recipients for one of the Association’s most prestigious honors, elevation to IEEE Fellow. The IEEE Board of Directors, at its November 2013 meeting, elevated Prof. Dey to IEEE Fellow, effective, 1 January 2014, with the following citation: for contributions to the design and testing of low-power systems and system-on-chips.
For most computer users, information is only valuable when it serves a context-specific purpose, such as providing the GPS coordinates for a new restaurant or a list of search results for a query on airline flights to Fiji. But for Professor Tara Javidi, understanding how people acquire and use information in various engineering applications is just as valuable. Her most recent grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) — a $1 million collaborative research award to Javidi, Andrea Goldsmith of Stanford University and Bruno Sinopoli at Carnegie Mellon University — will fund the development of a new theoretical framework for understanding how to best control information flow in large cyber-physical systems such as datacenters or smart energy grids. To read more go to: http://calit2.net/newsroom/article.php?id=2259.
Professor Mohan Trivedi is the recipient of the 2013 Outstanding Research Award from the IEEE Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Society. The award is given annually to recognize outstanding contributions to research in intelligent transportation as well as contributions to the ITS community. Professor Trivedi was cited for his “contributions to machine vision and learning for intelligent vehicles, and driver assistance and transportation systems.” To read more go to http://www.jacobsschool.ucsd.edu/news/news_releases/release.sfe?id=1439
Prof. Zhaowei Liu received the 2013 DARPA Young Faculty Award for "High-speed Nanophotonic LEDs at 100GHz and Beyond".
A group of early-career scientists at research universities have received grants totaling more than $12 million for basic research to address some of the Department of Defense’s (DoD) most challenging technological hurdles. From 226 applicants, 25 tenure-track faculty members were selected to receive up to $1 million each over the course of three years. The technology areas they will investigate align with DARPA's future program directions and were chosen with the ultimate goal of going beyond current research and providing new paths forward to realize tomorrow’s national security capabilities.
Researchers at UCSD report a breakthrough in technology that could pave the way for digital systems to record, store, edit and replay information in a dimension that goes beyond what we can see or hear: touch. Prof. Deli Wang is the senior author on a paper appearing in Nature Publishing Group’s Scientific Reports, published online Aug. 28. Co-authors include 11 researchers at UC San Diego, including fellow ECE professor Truong Nguyen, and UCLA professor Qibing Pei, whose team contributed to the sections on using polymer actuators for analog reproduction of recorded touch.
To read more go to: http://www.calit2.net/newsroom/release.php?id=2222
Professor Eric Fullerton delivers Plenary Lecture at the XXII International Materials Research Congress (IMRC)
Professor Fullerton gave the Fourth Plenary Lecture, titled "Materials Challenges for Advanced Magnetic Storage and Memory Applications," at the 2013 IMRC. Visit 2013 IMRC website for summary of the lecture: http://www.mrs.org/imrc2013/
ECE Alumnus Yichao Huang and ECE Professor Bhaskar D. Rao awarded Best Paper at the IEEE Vehicular Technology Conference
Alumnus Yichao Huang and Professor Bhaskar D. Rao received the best paper award at the Fall 2013 IEEE Vehicular Technology Conference held Sept. 3rd-5th, 2013, for their paper entitled, "Multicell Random Beamforming with CDF-based Scheduling: Exact Rate and Scaling Laws"
Link to VTC2013-Fall Conference Best Papers: http://www.ieeevtc.org/
Associate Professor Gert Lanckriet is among 81 of the nation’s most “creative young engineers” selected to attend this year’s U.S. Frontiers of Engineering symposium by the National Academy of Engineering. NAE selected engineers across the nation between the ages of 35-40 who have “demonstrated accomplishment in engineering research and technical work with recognizable contributions to advancing the frontiers of engineering,” to participate in this event. NAE Announcement. UCSD News.
Distinguished Professor Charles W. Tu Awarded Honorary Doctorate of Engineering at Linköping University
Over the past two decades Profesor Tu has had a close collaboration with Linköping University, Sweden (LiU) in developing frontier electronic/photonic/spintronic materials, resulting in over 150 joint publications and conference contributions with LiU’s professors Weimin Chen and Irina Buyanova. This collaboration was initiated when Professor Chen was working in the University of California at Berkeley. Since Chen’s return to LiU in 1993, the cooperation has flourished and has covered a very wide range of materials research. Congratulations to Professor Tu for this well deserved recognition.
(LiU Press Release: http://www.liu.se/liu-nytt/
Professor Alexander Vardy has been appointed as an inaugural holder of the Jack Keil Wolf Endowed Chair in Electrical Engineering. This distinguished appointment is a direct reflection of Professor Vardy's high standing in the field and regards by the UC San Diego academic community.
SPIE Member Prof. Zhaowei Liu is one of five photonics researchers receiving a Young Investigator award from the U.S. Office of Naval Research.
The award will fund his research in ultrafast blue and green LEDs for underwater optical wireless communication.
The Young Investigator Program seeks to identify and support academic scientists and engineers who are in their first or second full-time tenure-track or tenure-track-equivalent academic appointment and who show exceptional promise for doing creative research. The program aims to attract outstanding university faculty members to the Department of Navy's research program, support their research, and encourage their teaching and research careers.
ECE students Lele Wang and Minghai Qin (faculty advisors - Prof. Paul Siegel and Prof. Young-Han Kim) won one of the 8 Qualcomm Innovation Fellowships.
Out of 138 submitted proposals (from 15 schools) the judges first selected 33 finalists, then they selected the 8 winning teams (acceptance rate: 6%) who were awarded a $100,000 Fellowship each. The competition was so strong that this year for the first time they also recognized two additional teams with an Honorable Mention and a $50,000 grant each.
ECE Alumni, Dr. Stephen Pappert, Awarded Secretary of Defense Award for Excellence by Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta
Dr. Stephen Pappert, an ECE Alumni advised by Profesor Paul Yu, is being recognized for his outstanding efforts supporting the Advanced Components for Electronic Warfare Program Team. The team was a joint partnership between the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. They developed and implemented the Advanced Components for Electronic Warfare Program, which will help ensure the United States maintains the technological superiority in electronic warfare well into the future. This innovative program will develop, mature, and demonstrate 'leap-ahead' electronic warfare technologies that will help defeat rapidly evolving and emerging future threats to our warfighters and our Nation.
Prof. Sujit Dey has been named faculty director of the von Liebig Center for Entrepreneurism and Technology Advancement. The von Liebig Entrepreneurism Center offers pre-seed funding and business advisory services to researchers and students developing innovative technology at universities throughout Southern California. To read more go to http://www.jacobsschool.ucsd.edu/news/news_releases/release.sfe?id=1332
Prof. Bhaskar D. Rao and David P. Wipf have been selected for the 2012 SPS Best Paper Award for "An Empirical Bayesian Strategy for Solving the Simultaneous Sparse Approximation Problem" IEEE Transaction on Signal Processing, Volume: 55, No. 7, July 2007.
ACM has recognized 52 of its members for their contributions to computing that are fundamentally advancing technology in healthcare, cybersecurity, science, communications, entertainment, business, and education. Prof. Kahng was recognized for contributions to physical design automation and to design for manufacturability of microelectronic systems. To read more go to:
The Board of Directors of the Optical Society (OSA) elected Prof. Shayan Mookherjea as a Fellow of the Society. He is being recognized for pioneering contributions to the research and development of microresonator and coupled micro-resonator devices.
The Toyota Collaborative Safety Research Center (CSRC) is expanding its groundbreaking, partner-based automotive safety initiative with the launch of seven new research programs undertaken in partnership with 11 leading research institutions from across North America, including the University of California, San Diego.
To read the full story go to: http://ucsdnews.ucsd.edu/pressrelease/toyota_adds_uc_san_diego_to_safety_research_partners
Prof. Yuan Taur selected as the 2012 recipient of the IEEE Electron Devices Society J.J. Ebers Award
Professor Yan Taur has been selected as the 2012 recipient of the prestigious IEEE Electron Devices Society J.J. Ebers Award. This is the Society's highest honor to recognize outstanding technical contributions to the field of electron devices that have made a lasting impact.
This award was established in 1971 with the intention to foster progress in electron devices and to commemorate the life activities of Jewell James Ebers, whose distinguished contributions, particularly in the transistor art, shaped the understanding and technology of electron devices. It is presented annually to honor an individual(s) who has made either a single or a series of contributions of recognized scientific, economic, or social significance in the broad field of electron devices.
As Applied Optics celebrates its Golden anniversary they highlight the authors who have published the largest number of papers over the last 50 years. Prof. Shaya Fainman is on the list!
To browse the journal’s most prolific researchers along with the important research they published, go to www.opticsinfobase.org/ao/journal/ao/anniversary/50mostpublished.cfm.
Prof. Shaya Fainman is the 2012 winner of the Dennis Gabor award in recognition of outstanding contributions and novel applications of ultrafast pulses and nanophotonics in information processing systems.
To read more, go to www.prweb.com/releases/2012/7/prweb9692669.htm
ECE professor and ITA member Young-Han Kim won the 2012 Information Theory Paper Award. Using powerful mathematical techniques from information theory, linear systems theory, convex optimization, and functional analysis, Prof. Young-Han Kim, resolved a 40-year-old open problem in the field of communication. Professor Kim tackled the problem in a paper titled, “Feedback capacity of stationary Gaussian channels”.
The purpose of the Information Theory Paper Award is to recognize exceptional publications in the field and to stimulate interest in and encourage contributions to fields of interest of the Society.
To read the full story go to http://ucsdnews.ucsd.edu/pressrelease/uc_san_diego_professor_wins_top_information_theory_award#.UCKMzaBkF8F.
Andrew Huynh, a CSE gradate student (co-advised by Profs. Gert Lanckriet and Albert Lin won a "Judges' Choice" and a "Community Choice" award at the 2012 IGERT Video and Poster Competition. The competition is sponsored by the National Science Foundation. It features 114 presentations each made by a student or a team of students nominated from different IGERT Ph.D. programs (Andrew's project was one of the 3 UCSD nominations). To read more about the competition go to http://posterhall.org/igert2012/pages/about
UC San Diego won again in the California Micromouse Competition!
Todd Yamakawa of the University of Hawaii at Manoa designed an autonomous robot that raced to the center of a maze in just 11 seconds. But Yamakawa was penalized 30 seconds by the judges because he had to pick up his micromouse and move it when a glitch developed. The penalty gave the victory to Alex Forencich of UC San Diego, whose mouse made it through the maze in 40 seconds, just one second faster than Yamakawa's adjusted time.
Can a computer be taught to automatically label every song on the Internet using sets of examples provided by unpaid music fans? Prof. Gert Lanckriet and his research group have found that the answer is yes, and the results are as accurate as using paid music experts to provide the examples, saving considerable time and money. In results published in the April 24 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the researchers report that their solution, called “game-powered machine learning,” would enable music lovers to search every song on the web well beyond popular hits, with a simple text search using key words like “funky” or “spooky electronica.” To read the full story click here.
Members of the Sentinel camera trap team are ECE undergraduates: Kyle Johnson, Chris Ward, Riley Yeakle and Perry Naughton who competed for the Cornell Cup USA, presented by Intel.
Forget about building a better mouse trap. Riley Yeakle and his teammates have come up with a better camera trap, and they faced off with finalists from around the country when they unveiled working prototypes of their visions for embedded systems at a new, national engineering student competition. While falling short of the top three, the UC San Diego as well as UC Berkeley teams were awarded Honorable Mentions for their innovations.
For more information go to ucsdnews.ucsd.edu/pressreleases/uc_san_diego_students_to_demonstrate_smart_camera_trap_at_new_engineering_c/
Allot Communications announced last week that it is acquiring Ortiva Wireless, the company launched by UCSD Electrical Engineering Professor Sujit Dey in 2004 to manage mobile video and rich media content delivery. Dr. Dey is pleased with the intended acquisition as it will be complimentary and strategic, in line with rising market demand for integrated mobile data management solutions. Allot is committed to expanding the operations in San Diego, so it is good for the San Diego economy. Dr. Dey talked about the process of launching Ortiva Wireless and the challenges of commercialization during a recent dinner celebrating the 10th anniversary of the von Liebig Center for Entrepreneurism and Technology Advancement.
For more information go to:
ECE Professors Sujit Dey and Rene Cruz were among several Jacobs School faculty who shared their experiences in transferring research discoveries to marketable ideas in industry. Read the full story here.
ECE Prof. Gabriel Rebeiz has been awarded the 2012 Intel Outstanding Researcher Award in Microsystems, by Intel's Semiconductor Technology Council.
The Semiconductor Technology Council was established by Congress under the National Defense Authorization Act of FY1994 to foster continued government and industry cooperation in research and development for electronics and the semiconductor industry. The Council's mission is to link assessment by the semiconductor industry and national security needs for cooperative investments; foster cooperation among industry, government and academia; and align industry and government contributions for new semiconductor research and development efforts.
University of California, San Diego electrical engineers are building a forest of tiny nanowire trees in order to cleanly capture solar energy and harvest it for hydrogen fuel generation. Reporting in the journal Nanoscale, the team said nanowires, which are made from abundant natural materials like silicon and zinc oxide, also offer a cheap way to deliver hydrogen fuel on a mass scale.
The trees’ vertical structure and branches are keys to capturing the maximum amount of solar energy, according to Deli Wang, professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. In images of Earth from space, light reflects off of flat surfaces such as the ocean or deserts, while forests appear darker. That’s because the vertical structure of trees grabs and adsorbs light while flat surfaces simply reflect it, Wang said, adding that it is also similar to retinal photoreceptor cells in the human eye.
Photo: Rapid hydrogen generation on the surface of nanotree electrodes that are submersed in water and illuminated by simulated sun light.
Wang’s team has mimicked this structure in their “3D branched nanowire array” which uses a process called photoelectrochemical water-splitting to produce hydrogen gas. Water splitting refers to the process of separating water into oxygen and hydrogen in order to extract hydrogen gas to be used as fuel. This process uses clean energy with no green-house gas by-product. By comparison, the current conventional way of producing hydrogen relies on electricity from fossil fuels
“Hydrogen is considered to be clean fuel compared to fossil fuel because there is no carbon emission, but the hydrogen currently used is not generated cleanly,” said Ke Sun, the first author of the article and graduate student in the Wang group who led the project.
By harvesting more sun light using the vertical nanotree structure, Wang’s team has developed a way to produce more hydrogen fuel efficiently compared to planar counterparts.
“This is a clean way to generate clean fuel,” added Wang who is also affiliated with the California Institute of Telecommunications and Information Technology and the Material Science and Engineering Program at UC San Diego. “Using solar energy for water splitting is the hottest topic in hydrogen fuel,” he said.
Prof. Eric Fullerton has been selected as the 2012 recipient of the AIP Prize for Industrial Applications of Physics, which recognizes scientists who have developed proven industrial technologies.
Tim Gathman, Ph.D. student of Prof. James Buckwalter won the “Best Student Paper Award” at the 2012 SiRF Conference for his paper "An Integrate-and-Dump Receiver for High Dynamic Range Photonic Analog-to-Digital Conversion". His paper was selected from among 10 finalists.
Read full text of live chat, on this page: http://news.sciencemag.org/
Find out how two new technologies (the first produces solar cells from plastics and other organic compounds; the second uses tiny inorganic nanoscale wires to capture the sun's energy) capture sunlight, how scientists use nanotechnology to create these cells, and how they can help solar panels churn out more power for less money.
Prof. Paul Yu has been named 2011 Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the nation’s largest scientific organization. He was honored by the association for “efforts toward advancing science applications that are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished.”
Ron Reedy, an ECE alumnus (earned a Ph.D. in electrical engineering and applied physics in 1984) and co-founder and chief operations officer of San Diego-based Peregrine Semiconductor recently gave an inspirational and informative talk to students at the Jacobs School of Engineering about succeeding as an entrepreneur in the technology sector and about silicon on sapphire, the technology that made his company successful.
Professors Truong Nguyen and Larry Milstein were awarded best teacher awards for the 2010-2011 academic year (for undergraduate and graduate teaching, respectively).Both faculty members received the highest praise from their students and have demonstrated true excellence in academic instruction.Congratulations to them both!
Anton Monk, Founder of Entropic Communications, ECE PhD Alum, and member of ECE and Jacbobs School's Industrial Advisory Boards, spoke to KPBS about ECE's impact on local industry and economic development.
The September 26 cover page of the San Diego Union Tribune featured ECE faculty Prof. Gert Lanckriet and a compelling story about his current research and smartphone applications. Read the entire UT story here.
ECE Faculty and Associate Vice Chancellor for Research Initiaves Prof. Paul Yu was honored last week as the inaugural holder of the William S. C. Chang Endowed Chair in Electrical Engineering.
Read more details about Profs. Yu and Chang here.
ECE Professor Gert Lanckriet has made the prestigious list of MIT Technology Review's Innovators under 35, for his work with computer music and computer audition. Read the full story here.
http://ucsdnews.ucsd.edu/newsrel/awards/20110809YoungScholar.aspUC-SAN DIEGO’S BILL PING PIU KUONAMED 2011 YOUNG SCHOLAR BY THE MARCONI SOCIETY
Palo Alto, CA, August 2, 2011 –Bill Ping Piu Kuo, a stellar photonics student who is about to receive his doctorate of philosophy in electrical engineering from the University of California, San Diego, is one of three students worldwide to be honored by the prestigious Marconi Society. He was selected a Marconi Young Scholar in part because of key work in ultra-fast signal processing based on parametric mixers.As the leading organization devoted to recognizing and encouraging scientific contributions to communication sciences and the Internet, the Marconi Society annually honors young scholars who already are engaged in influential work and are likely to transform their fields in some significant way. All three of this year’s Marconi Society Paul Baran Young Scholar Award recipients are completing their doctorates while making vital contributions to the world’s “need for speed” – our increasing imperative to be able to send and receive data as quickly and economically as possible.Though intricate and often theoretical, their research is aimed at making communications faster and more efficient, giving people everyday benefits -- from better video-on-demand service to improved MRI scans that yield medical images in a quicker and thus more comfortable way.Kuo’s optical signal processing research is prompted by the problem of ever-increasing stress on the capacity of transmission systems. He has concentrated on developing wideband optical parametric mixers and ultra-fast transmission schemes to send and receive signals of unprecedented speed and quality – and with record low power consumption. That has opened a pathway to realize a photonic-aided analog-to-digital converter system with unprecedented bandwidth and fidelity. “I would like to try to commercialize the technology,” said Kuo, who plans to do so in conjunction with UCSD.Having been first in his class while earning a bachelor’s degree in electronic and communications engineering and then a master of philosophy in electronic engineering from the University of Hong Kong, he became an immediate standout at UCSD.His supervisor there, Photonics System Laboratory Director Stojan Radic, observed that Kuo has contributed to more than 30 peer-reviewed publications, including prestigious post-deadline and invited papers at events such as the Optical Fiber Communications Conference. “It is safe to say that he does not have a peer in this field at his present age,” said Radic, who described Kuo as “unconditionally regarded as the best researcher of (his) group or the department to date.” He said Kuo’s leadership and vision on parametric signal processing “has resulted in completely new signal processing architectures and newfound ability to manipulate fast signals.”To illustrate the value of Kuo’s work, Radic likens optic fiber to a large fire hose gushing with the fluids of information – so much that today’s electronics simply aren’t fast enough to consume it all. “So what Bill has done is take this fire hose and split it into little straws, and these straws can be sipped by conventional electronics.” Such breakthroughs, by allowing quicker and more efficient transmissions, could for example rescue systems capable of streaming high-quality video, which otherwise are in danger of collapsing under increasing demand.The Marconi Young Scholar Awards are named in honor of Paul Baran, a Marconi Fellow famous for helping devise the technical inner-workings of the Arpanet, the government-sponsored precursor to the Internet. Nonetheless, Baran always declined to be called the inventor of the Internet, instead likening it to a vast cathedral built by countless people continually adding their own stones to reshape its image.This marks the fourth year that Young Scholars Awards have been granted by the Marconi Society, which is best known for its annual $100,000 Marconi Award and Fellowship given to living scientists whose scope of work and influence emulate the principle of “creativity in service to humanity." As Marconi Society Chairman Emeritus Robert Lucky noted, the scholars selection committee “looks for candidates who show the potential to win the Marconi Prize -- the equivalent of the Nobel Prize in communications science -- at some point in the future. As a point of reference, Marconi Fellows have been at the forefront of every modern advance in telecommunications and the Internet.”The Young Scholar Awards include a financial stipend and an invitation and travel funds to attend the annual Marconi Award Dinner, to be held in September in San Diego.About the Marconi SocietyThe Marconi Society was established in 1974 through an endowment set up by Gioia Marconi Braga, daughter of Guglielmo Marconi, the Nobel laureate who invented radio (wireless telegraphy). Through symposia, conferences, forums and publications, the Marconi Society promotes awareness of major innovations in communication theory, technology and applications with particular attention to understanding how they change and benefit society. Additional information can be found at www.marconisociety.org.
The North American Molecular Beam Epitaxy (NAMBE) Advisory Board and Veeco, Inc. will honor electrical and computer engineering professor Charles Tu with its MBE Innovator Award on Aug. 16 for significantly advancing the field of Molecular Beam Epitaxy (MBE). MBE is a versatile research tool for growing single-crystalline films atomic-layer by atomic-layer in order to build devices like high-performance transistors, lasers and solar cells. Tu is also associate dean of the UCSD Jacobs School of Engineering. The award will be presented at UCSD during the annual NAMBE conference banquet.MBE systems traditionally relied upon ultra-pure solid elements, such as gallium and arsenic, which could only be used to grow arsenides, leaving out other compounds that are important in fiber-optic communications.When Tu came to UCSD in 1988, he set up one of the first gas-source MBE systems in the United States, enabling his research team to grow a wider variety of materials -- including arsenides, phosphides, nitrides, and mixtures of them – than was previously possible. Currently, Tu is growing dilute nitrides – a new class of materials pioneered in his shop over the past 12 years – for intermediate-band solar cells and nanowire solar cells.The MBE Innovator Award recognizes individuals whose innovative work has significantly advanced the field of MBE in materials research, device development or commercialization, or equipment development.
The Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship enables PhD students (in a team of two) in Electrical Engineering/Computer Science to pursue their futuristic innovative ideas. In 2011, the Fellowship received 146 applications from teams in 11 of the top US schools. The list of 8 Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship 2011 winners includes UCSD student Siarhei Vishniakou, recommended by Prof. Deli Wang, who collaborated with Paul Brochu of UCLA on the proposal “I-SENSE – Innovative Technology Enabling New Life-style.
Irwin Mark Jacobs and Jack Keil Wolf – two engineers whose groundbreaking research and designs in digital communication helped propel the information revolution – are the winners of the prestigious 2011 Marconi Society Fellowship and Prize. Their lives' work dramatically boosted the speed, capacity and accuracy of voice and data transmissions around the world, in a way that is considered technological genius by experts yet seems nothing short of magic to the billions of people who enjoy such benefits whenever they use a cell phone, swipe a credit card, watch a DVD, or retrieve digitized information, seemingly out of thin air.
The first ever California Micromouse Competition was held on May 22nd, 2011 in Qualcomm Conference Room. 13 robots from 8 schools competed: 4 from UCSD, 3 from UCLA, 1 each from UCR, UCSB, USC, California Baptist University, CSU-LA, and Kansas State University. Out of the 13 robots, 4 of them solved the maze and got to the center!
1st place: UCSD 3 Team Alex Forencich 39 seconds
2nd place: UCSD 1 Vampires 75 seconds
3rd place: UCLA 2 In Green We Trust 77 seconds
Mighty Mouse: UCLA 3 Pikachu for doing its best to "break through the walls".
ViaCar is a design competition sponsored by ViaSat and hosted by IEEE UCSD where students build autonomous race cars to follow a track marked by a wire carrying a 75kHz sinusoidal current. Seven teams from 2 schools attended this year's competition. Also, congratulations to Todor Mollov for winning 5th place at the Natcar competition at UC Davis.Viacar competition results: http://ieee.ucsd.edu/
viacar/results.phpNatcar competition results: http://www.ece. ucdavis.edu/natcar/results/ 2011.htmlAnd of course, a big thanks to our sponsors, ViaSat, the Jacobs School, and IEEE.
Please join us in congratulating Alex Forencich for winning the First Place in the IEEE Region 6 Southwest Area Student Paper Contest, held in Phoenix last Saturday. His winning paper is titled "Learning to track colors under a dynamically changing light source". It is a project he undertook at Tohoku University in Sendai, Japan, during his study abroad this year.
One IEEE UCSD MicroMouse Team won the Third Place in the IEEE Region 6 Southwest Area MicroMouse Contest. Last year's champion, designed, built, and programmed by Alex Forencich and Jeffrey Wurzbach, was undefeated.
Electrical engineering Ph.D. student Chirag Patel won the top prize – the Rudee Outstanding Poster Award – at Research Expo 2011 for his work on RF MEMS metal-contact switches.
Read full JSOE story here.
Professors Joe Ford and Paul Siegel were awarded best teacher awards for the 2009-2010 academic year (for undergraduate and graduate teaching, respectively).
Both faculty members received the highest praise from their students and have demonstrated true excellence in academic instruction.
Congratulations to them both!
Prof. Sujit Dey and students at the at UC San Diego's Electrical and Computer Engineering Department were picked along with those of other universities around the world to explore fundamental changes to today's wireless networks.
The multi-year, multi-million dollar research endeavor is led by Cisco, Intel and Verizon called the Video Aware Wireless Network (VAWN) project, as reported here earlier. "We now have resources to change how we see and use wireless networks," Dey said.
Read more here.
Gert Lanckriet has been awarded a prestigious Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship for his work on machine learning, computer audition and music information retrieval. The fellowships are awarded in chemistry, computer science, economics, mathematics, evolutionary and computational molecular biology, neuroscience, and physics. Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellows are selected on the basis of their independent research accomplishments, creativity, and potential to become leaders in the scientific community through their contributions to their field.
Two of our outstanding faculty - Jim Buckwalter and Gert Lanckriet - have just been awarded NSF CAREER Awards.
Gert Lanckriet: An Integrated Framework for Multimodal Music Search and Discovery
Jim Buckwalter: Reconfigurable Traveling Wave Silicon Integrated Circuits for Millimeter-Wave Testing
Please join us in congratulating them for this outstanding achievement.
CAREER program offers the National Science Foundation's most prestigious awards in support of the early career-development activities of those teacher-scholars who most effectively integrate research and education within the context of the mission of their organization. Such activities should build a firm foundation for a lifetime of integrated contributions to research and education.
ECE graduate students Jason Karp, Justin Hallas and colleagues are researching solar concentrator designs that use a two-dimensional sheet of micro-optic lenses as a solar concentrator. Jason won first place at Jacobs School Research Expo in 2010 with a poster on this topic.
Read the full article here.
ECE Students Jordan Rhee and Jeffrey Wurzbach win prestigious Gordon Leadership Awards. Awards were presented at a ceremony held last week.
The Gordon Center offers educational, awards and networking programs and opportunities for undergraduate, graduate and professional students with leadership potential. The Gordon Center serves as an umbrella for existing and emerging opportunities within and beyond the Jacobs School to gain leadership experience. Students will participate in focused classes, workshops, leadership forums and summer schools that integrate exciting engineering and leadership challenges and practices. Outstanding achievements will be rewarded with Gordon Engineering Leadership Awards. Upon successful completion of the Center's program, students will receive a Gordon Engineering Leadership Certificate and will join the Gordon Alumni Network.
Engineering Leadership Core Values
The Gordon Center strives to instill in Jacobs School students the attitudes, knowledge and skill sets required for engineering leadership. The Center promotes the following values:
- Maintain the highest level of integrity and ethics in all conduct
- Have the vision to understand the issues facing society and how an engineering project can help address those issues
- Have the breadth and depth of engineering knowledge to understand constraints and possibilities in developing an engineering innovation
- Know how to assess the potential market and listen to potential users in order to look for additional opportunities for innovation
- Have the ability to convincingly communicate his/herr vision downward, upward and outward
- Know how to prepare novel product proposals and an accepted business plan
- Take risks in exploring or inventing innovative designs and processes in order to meet challenging performance goals
- Accept personal responsibility for developing an innovative project on time, to budget and to specification of the client
- Understand how to recruit, motivate, educate, empower, and engender loyalty from team members.
- Possess a passion and intellectual drive for life-long learning.
Best student paper award: Nikhil Rasiwasia, Jose Costa Pereira, Emanuele Coviello, Gabe Doyle, Gert Lanckriet, Roger Levy, Nuno Vasconcelos, A New Approach To Cross-Modal Multimedia Retrieval
More than a dozen research papers at the 2010 IEEE International Symposium on Information Theory (ISIT) were co-authored by researchers from the University of California, San Diego, and the papers presented by graduate students resonated with reviewers. Among 250 student papers at the June conference in Austin, Texas, 44 were selected as finalists by the Information Theory Society Award Committee, and five of those were co-authored by students affiliated with the Information Theory and Applications Center (ITA), based at the UCSD division of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2). The papers were evaluated based on technical content and the quality of the presentation at ISIT, and now the Society has announced that one of the UCSD finalists is also a Best Student Paper Award winner for 2010.
Jayadev Acharya, a third-year graduate student in the Electrical and Computer Engineering department, received the news while he was in India – getting married. “It was a great honor for my colleagues and me,” said Acharya. “Could there be a better wedding gift?” read more
ECE Professor Gert Lanckriet is the recipient of a 2010 IBM Faculty Award. This is a worldwide award, that distinguishes senior faculty of outstanding reputation and young faculty of unusual promise. The award recognizes Prof. Lanckriet's contributions to machine learning and music understanding.
Luke Barrington and Brian McFee have been awarded the 2010 Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship (QIF), for their proposal, "Location-, Demographic-, Preference- and Content-Based Music Search and Recommendation," with their advisor Gert Lanckriet. Lawrence Saul (CSE) supported the proposal as secondary mentor. This selective fellowship provides $100,000 and was awarded to six out of 80 submissions from five universities (Berkeley, Stanford, UCLA, USC, and UCSD). Luke and Brian`s project proposes advances in signal processing and machine learning to provide personalized, mobile music search and discovery.
Emanuele Coviello received a Yahoo! Key Scientific Challenges Award for his proposal "Content-Based Music Video Tagging using Hierarchically Trained Dynamic Texture Mixtures," with his advisor Gert Lanckriet. The Key Scientific Challenges competition is a nation-wide competition. Only a small number of outstanding Ph.D. students are selected for the award, in recognition of the importance and significance of their research.
Imagine packing four billion nanolasers on a three-inch semiconductor wafer. That is now nearer to reality, thanks to researchers at the University of California, San Diego's Jacobs School of Engineering, who have demonstrated a micron-sized laser – less than one-thousandth of a millimeter on each side – that can operate at room temperature. Until now, the only way to operate such a nanolaser was to cool it cryogenically to offset the various losses in the device. The UCSD solution, as published online in advance of appearing in the May issue of the journal Nature Photonics*, was to add super-thin layers of silica (glass) and aluminum to encase the core of each device. Read more
Professor Jack Wolf, holder of the Stephen O. Rice Chair at CMRR, has been elected to the National Academy of Sciences, in recognition of his distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. The National Academy of Sciences was established in 1863 and advises the federal government in any matter of science or technology. Read more
Jason Karp, a Ph.D. student in the Photonic Systems Integration Laboratory was the recipient of the Best Overall Poster Award at this years` JSOE Research Expo. This is a meeting where UCSD students from the entire School of Engineering present their latest research. This year, more than 200 posters were on display. Jason's work focuses on new concentrator optics for solar photovoltaics. His design uses thousands of micro-optic lenses and a common waveguide to create planar collectors compatible with large-scale fabrication. More information can be found at http://psilab.ucsd.edu. Read more
Professor Farrokh Najmabadi has been elected Fellow of the American Nuclear Society. This election recognizes Prof. Najmabadi's contributions to the advancement of fusion science and technology throughout the years. The grade of Fellow is the highest membership grade of the Society. Professor Massimo Franceschetti is the recipient of the award for Best Tutorial Paper of the IEEE Communications Society in 2009. The paper, "Stochastic Geometry and Random Graphs for the Analysis and Design of Wireless Networks," was published in the IEEE Journal on Selected Areas in Communications, with co-authors Martin Haenggi, Jeffrey G. Andrews, Francois Baccelli, and Olivier Dousse. The award recognizes an outstanding tutorial paper published by the Society in its magazine or journals. Professor Andrew Kahng has been re-appointed Recreation Council Representative on the Balboa Park Committee by San Diego's Mayor, Jerry Sanders. The Balboa Park Committee advises the Mayor and City Council on policy issues regarding the acquisition, development, maintenance and operation of the Balboa Park. The Department congratulates Prof. Kahng on the appointment, and salutes his continued service to the City of San Diego. Read more Professor Jie Xiang has received the National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award. The CAREER Program is NSF’s most prestigious award in support of the early career-development activities of junior faculty. Professor Xiang’s research program aims to be transformative in terms of extending traditional electronic circuits and models into utilizing the mechanical degree of freedom in conjunction with novel nanoelectronics components in order to achieve high speed computation as well as low standby power as building blocks for future information technology. The 5-year, $400,000 award will also allow him to integrate cutting edge nanotechnology research with a series of educational and outreach activities to engage the interest of the broader community. Prof. Gabriel Rebeiz is the recipient of the 2010 Distinguished Educator Award of the IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques Society (MTT-S). This award is given to a distinguished educator in the field of microwave engineering and science who exemplifies the special human qualities of the late Fred J. Rosenbaum who considered teaching a high calling and demonstrated his dedication to the MTT-S through tireless service. Prof. Rebeiz has been cited for his "Outstanding Achievements as an Educator, Mentor And Role Model of Microwave Engineers and Engineering Students". The award will be conferred at the annual Society Awards Banquet to be held during the International Microwave Symposium the week of May 23 to 28, 2010 in Anaheim, California. Prof. Andrew Viterbi has been named by the IEEE Board of Directors as the recipient of the 2010 IEEE Medal of Honor. The Medal honors Prof. Viterbi's seminal contributions to communications technology and theory. The UCSD Student Branch of the IEEE is one of the Runner Ups in the International Student Branch Web Site Contest for 2008-2009. The contest was sponsored by the IEEE Student Activities Committee (SAC). Over 120 Student Branches participated in their regional contests, from which the IEEE judges chose the top web site designs worldwide. The web site designs are for and by IEEE Student members. Dr. Dharmendra S. Modha, a PhD alumni of the ECE Department, now at IBM Research, has received the ACM Gordon Bell Prize. This prize has been awarded since 1987 to recognize outstanding achievement in high-performance computing. It is now administered by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), with financial support for the stipend provided by Gordon Bell, a pioneer in high-performance and parallel computing. The prize was awarded at the Supercomputing 2009 conference. Prof. Ramesh Rao has been elected Fellow of the IEEE, for leadership in wireless communications. Professor Young-Han Kim is the recipient of the 2008 Bergmann Memorial Research Award from the United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation (BSF). This award is made annually to outstanding young investigators of newly awarded BSF grants, judged on the basis of the quality of their proposals. Professor Kim's project is on "the role of directed information in causal inference," collaborative research with Dr. Haim Permuter at Ben-Gurion University in Israel. The Bergmann Award is given in memory of the late professor Ernest David Bergmann, who was internationally recognized for his significant contributions to organic chemistry. He played a major role in establishing the BSF in 1972 and served on its board of governors until his death in 1975. One of his special interests was to encourage young scientists.Professor Joseph Ford has been elected Fellow of the Optical Society of America for pioneering research in free-space optical technology, including the first use of micromechanics for equalization and switching in wavelength multiplexed communication. Bharath Sriperumbudur has been awarded an Honorable Mention for the Outstanding Student Paper at the annual Neural Information Processing Systems Conference, NIPS 2009, for the paper "Kernel Choice and Classifiability for RKHS Embeddings of Probability Distributions," with his advisor Gert Lanckriet, in collaboration with Kenji Fukumizu at ISM, Tokyo and Arthur Gretton and Bernhard Schölkopf at MPI, Tübingen. NIPS is one of the two international flagship conferences in machine learning. Electrical engineers recently pitted Genius – the music recommendation system in Apple’s iTunes – against two experimental music recommender systems. Genius appears to capture acoustic similarities among songs within the same playlist, the researchers found. The University of California, San Diego electrical engineers also discovered that the music recommender they built from scratch can generate song playlists that human subjects thought were as good as those that Genius generates. Read more... Professor Gert Lanckriet and his Ph.D. student, Brian McFee, have been awarded a Best Presentation Award by the International Society for Music Information Retrieval for their paper “Heterogeneous Embedding for Subjective Artist Similarity.” Their paper was presented at the Society's annual flagship conference, ISMIR 2009, and published in the Proceedings. Brendan Morris, an ECE student working with Prof. Mohan Trivedi, is the winner of the 2009 Student Essay Competition by the Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America). Brendan's paper deals with video based trajectory analysis for traffic pattern and vehicle classification, for safety enhancement. It shows how machine learning and vision algorithms can be used for predicting potentially dangerous situations in real-time. This research is sponsored by NSF, Volkswagen and UC Discovery. The award is the most prestigious recognition given to a student involved in the field of Intelligent Transportation and Intelligent Vehicles. ECE students recently shined in the IEEEXtreme 24 Hour Online Competition. The Department was represented by two teams, which were ranked in the top 20 out of 700 entrants worldwide. Team "The Bagpipe Lubricators", which placed 4th out of 130 in 2008, placed 16th overall (6th from United States), and team "XYZZY" placed 19th (7th from United States). The two teams ranked 1st and 2nd among all teams from IEEE Region 6. Congratulations to the ECE Extreme Programmers: Jordan Rhee (captain), Rene Claus, Eric Levine; and Elliott Slaughter (captain), Chris McFarland. Congratulations to the UCSD Student Branch of IEEE for being selected to receive IEEE Region 6 Southwest Area (SWA) 2009 Outstanding Student Branch Award! The UCSD branch was chosen amongst all branches in San Diego, Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico. The award will be presented on Saturday, October 10th, 2009 at IEEE Region 6 Southwest Area (SW) Fall, 2009 meeting. Electrical engineering professor Ian Galton is the featured innovator in the September 2009 issue of “invent@UCSD” — the newsletter of the UC San Diego Technology Transfer Office. Galton leads the Integrated Signal Processing Group within the Jacobs School's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Read more... Dr. Shinko Cheng, a former student of Prof. Mohan Trivedi, received the Best PhD Dissertation Award for 2008 of the IEEE Intelligent Transportation Society. This is a very competitive award, involving recent PhDs from all over the world. It was established to encourage doctoral research that combines theory and practice, makes in-depth technical contributions, having the potential to contribute to the ITSS and broaden the ITS topic areas from either the methodological or application perspectives. Dr. Cheng's dissertation research is about vision algorithms for capturing human gestures and novel driver assistance for safe driving. The award recognizes the leadership of UCSD's Computer Vision and Robotics Research Laboratory in the area of Intelligent Transportation and Vehicle Systems. The University of California, San Diego (UCSD), provider of a leading program in microwave and millimeter-wave RFICs and mixed-signal, and Jazz Semiconductor®, a Tower Group Company (NASDAQ: TSEM) (TASE: TSEM), today announced that they have collaborated to develop a two-antenna quad-beam RFIC phased array receiver covering the 11-15 GHz frequency range. First time success was achieved using Jazz Semiconductor’s high performance 0.18-micron SiGe BiCMOS process and its own proprietary models, kit and DIRECT MPW (Multiproject Wafer) program. The chip was designed and tested by the Electrical and Computer Engineering School at UCSD, and was sponsored by the DARPA RF VLSI program, Dr. Mark Rosker, Program Monitor. Read more... Prof. Charles Tu is the recipient of a Pan Wen-Yuan Foundation 2009 Outstanding Research Award. This is regarded as Taiwan's most prestigious technical award. It honors outstanding achievement in the fields of electronics, telecommunications, computer science, information technology, and information systems. The Pan Wen-Yuan Outstanding Research Award is given annually to three or four recipients of Chinese descent from Taiwan, mainland China and the rest of the world. Eitan Yaakobi, an ECE doctoral student at CMRR, is one of 5 students world-wide to be selected for a 2009 Marconi Society Young Scholar Award. Marco Papaleo, another of the 5 recipients, is currently a visiting graduate student researcher at CMRR. The Marconi Society’s Young Scholar Award recognizes outstanding academic achievement and intellectual promise in the field of telecommunications. Electrical engineers from the University of California, San Diego invented radio frequency integrated circuits that could lead to significantly less expensive imaging systems for identifying concealed weapons, for helping helicopters to land during dust storms, and for high frequency data communications. UC San Diego engineers presented this circuit at the 2009 IEEE Radio Frequency Integrated Circuits (RFIC) Symposium on June 9, where it won one of the best three-student-paper awards. Read more... UC San Diego computer scientists are one step closer to building low cost networks of underwater sensors for real time underwater environmental monitoring. At the IEEE Reconfigurable Architectures Workshop in Rome, Italy, on May 25, computer scientists from the Jacobs School of Engineering presented a paper highlighting the energy conservation benefits of using reconfigurable hardware rather than competing hardware platforms for their experimental underwater sensor nets.Read more... Prof. Gert Lanckriet has been selected as a Hellman Fellow for 2009. The Hellman Fellowship, funded through the generosity of Chris and Warren Hellman, supports assistant professors who show capacity for great distinction in their work. The award will support Prof. Lanckriet's research on the interplay between machine learning and music / audio analysis. Jordan Rhee, an undergraduate in the ECE program, has been awarded a Fellowship by the Chancellor's Interdisciplinary Collaboratories program, for his research in the context of a project on patient-specific cardiovascular modeling. The project involves researchers from five UCSD departments, and the Fellowship covers Jordan's tuition and fees. An intrepid group of UC San Diego undergraduates dared to design and build a robotic mouse from scratch. The electrical engineering and computer science undergraduates from the Jacobs School of Engineering also wrote the software to teach the robot to solve a maze. The team unveiled their mouse at the IEEE Region 6 Southwest Area Spring Meeting on Saturday, April 25th, held at UC San Diego. Watch the video... Prof. Rene Cruz is the recipient of the 2009 INFOCOM achievement award from the IEEE Communication Society. This prestigious award recognizes Prof. Cruz' contributions in the area of communication networks. The award was announced at the 2009 IEEE INFOCOM Conference, the IEEE flagship conference which addresses key topics and issues related to computer communications, with emphasis on traffic management and protocols for both wired and wireless networks. Prof. Paul Yu has been appointed to the position of Associate Vice Chancellor of Research Initiatives at UCSD. Prof. Yu will join the Office of Research Affairs, assisting the development and implementation of a strategic vision for UCSD research initiatives, including new programs to support large interdisciplinary projects, advanced technology transfer, and expanded undergraduate research at UCSD. Prof. Alex Vardy and Paul Siegel are the recipients, along with LANL colleagues Dr. N. Santhi and Dr. M. Chertkov, of a 3-year grant for research on "Coding, Detection, and Inference in Multiple Dimensions", as part of the UC Lab Research Program. The project addresses problems in multi-dimensional data representation and coding, as well as detection and inference on graphical models of multi-dimensional storage and transmission channels. The grant is one of 9 awarded to UCSD. Dr. Kaizhong Gao, a CMRR graduate who received his Ph.D. in Physics in 2002 under the supervision of Prof. Neal Bertram of ECE, was recently named the 2009 Minnesota Young Engineer of the Year by the Minnesota Federation of Engineering, Science and Technology Societies. Kaizhong is a Senior Engineer and Manager at the Seagate R&D facility in Bloomington, MN. The poster “A Stress-Tolerant Temperature-Stable RF MEMS Switched Capacitor” by Isak Reines and Prof. Gabriel Rebeiz has been selected for the best poster award in Electrical and Computer Engineering at the Jacobs School of Engineering Research Expo 2009. This work was supported under the DARPA N/MEMS Science and Technology Fundamentals program with the aim transitioning RF MEMS technology into DoD systems. The poster described temperature-stable RF MEMS capacitive switches which can be fabricated in a variety of processes and under different stress conditions with high reliability. The paper “Spurious-Tone Suppression Techniques Applied to a Wide-Bandwidth 2.4GHz Fractional-N PLL” by Kevin Wang, Ashok Swaminathan, and Prof. Ian Galton has been selected for the Jack Kilby Outstanding Student Paper Award of the IEEE International Solid-State Circuits Conference. This is the flagship conference in Solid-State Circuits. San Diego, CA, February 11, 2009 -- New imaging and high capacity wireless communications systems are one step closer to reality, thanks to a millimeter wave amplifier invented at the University of California, San Diego and unveiled on Feb 11, 2009 at the prestigious International Solid-State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) in San Francisco, Calif. Read more... Professor Mohan Trivedi has been elected Fellow of the IEEE for contributions to intelligent transportation systems. Roberto Padovani is the recipient of the 2009 IEEE Eric E. Sumner Award, for pioneering innovations in wireless communications, particularly to the evolution of CDMA for wireless broadband data. "Adaptive Modulation for OFDM-based multiple description progressive image transmission" by Sheu Sheu Tan, Min-Joong Rim, Prof. Pamela Cosman and Prof. Laurence Milstein is one of 11 papers selected to receive a GC'08 Best Paper Award. Out of over 1000 papers accepted to be presented at GC'08, 24 outstanding papers were nominated as candidates, and 11 were finally chosen to receive awards; this represents 1% of the papers selected for presentation at IEEE GLOBECOM 2008. Paul Siegel, and his former Ph.D. students Joseph Soriaga (now with Qualcomm's Corporate R&D Division) and Henry Pfister (now on the ECE faculty at Texas A&M), are the recipients of the 2007 IEEE Communications Society Data Storage Technical Committee Best Paper Award for the paper "Determining and Approaching Achievable Rates of Binary Intersymbol Interference Channels Using Multistage Decoding," published in the April 2007 issue of the IEEE Transactions on Information Theory. Sunhyoung Han has been selected as the winner of the IBM Student Paper Award for ICIP 2008, for the paper "Complex discriminant features for object classification", co-authored with Nuno Vasconcelos. ICIP is the IEEE's flagship conference in the area of image and video processing. Mohan Trivedi, Bhaskar Rao and Shankar Shivappa received the “Best paper Award” at the 5th IEEE International Conference On Advanced Video and Signal Based Surveillance (AVSS 2008) for their paper "Person Tracking With Audio-visual Cues Using the Iterative Decoding Framework". This publication is based on their ongoing research in audio-visual information fusion for human activity analysis. The experimental part of the research is conducted in the new CalIT2 Smartspace Laboratory and the SHIVA Lab. San Diego, CA, October 1, 2008 -- This week, wireless pioneer and UC San Diego professor emeritus Andrew Viterbi received a National Medal of Science, in part for work that would become known as the Viterbi algorithm. This algorithm is used in virtually every cell phone today where it performs interference suppression and efficient decoding of digital transmission sequences. Viterbi also made important contributions to the Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) wireless technology that transformed the theory and practice of digital communications.Read more San Diego, CA, Aug. 12, 2008 -- They've coped with leaks, navigation problems and a few minor explosions, but the San Diego iBotics team — based at UC San Diego and funded by the Jacobs School of Engineering — had the most beautiful underwater craft in this year's competition of the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI). Their sleek, carbon-fiber entry, dubbed the “Stingray,” features a lightweight shell that resembles a small stingray and provides very little drag. Read more Ian Galton and Andrea Panigada are the recipients of the 2008 IEEE Circuits and Systems Society Darlington Best Paper Award for the paper "Digital Background Correction of Harmonic Distortion in Pipelined ADCs", published in IEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems. San Diego, CA, May 13, 2008 -- University of California, San Diego electrical engineers have created experimental solar cells spiked with nanowires that could lead to highly efficient thin-film solar cells of the future. Read more... San Diego, CA, May 13, 2008 -- Thanks to nanostructures that scatter and channel light, University of California, San Diego electrical engineers are working toward thin-film “single junction” solar cells with the potential for nearly 45 percent sunlight-to-electricity conversion efficiencies. This Jacobs School effort to break the theoretical limit of 31 percent efficiency for conventional single junction cells recently received a big funding boost from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar America program. Read more... San Diego, CA, May 06, 2008 -- Bhaskar Rao is a space explorer, though he is no astronaut. The electrical engineer from UC San Diego’s Jacobs School of Engineering explores the “space frontier” that has opened up with the emergence of MIMO (multiple input multiple output) technologies for wireless communications. In MIMO systems, both transmitters and receivers contain multiple antennae, which means that space – and not just time – is in play when it comes to signal processing strategies for increasing data rates, reliability, users served, and other parameters in wireless communications networks. Read more... Congratulations to UCSD IEEE Student Branch, which came in 4th (out of 130 teams from 31 countries) in the second annual IEEExtreme Programming Competition! San Diego, CA, April 22, 2008 -- As the pace of photonic device development quickens, researchers at UC San Diego have shown that actually slowing light can accelerate future development in this promising field. Read more... Bongyong Song, Rene L. Cruz and Bhaskar D. Rao have been selected winners of the 2008 Stephen O. Rice Prize Paper Award in the Field of Communications Systems for their paper: "Network Duality for Multiuser MIMO Beamforming Networks and Applications," IEEE Transactions on Communications, March 2007. Professor Gert Lanckriet has been awarded the Optimization Prize by the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM). The award recognizes his paper "A Direct Formulation for Sparse PCA Using Semidefinite Programming" in collaboration with Profs. El Ghaoui and Jordan at Berkeley, and d'Aspremont at Princeton. SIAM is a society that ensures the strongest interactions between mathematics and other scientific communities. Professor Paul K.L. Yu has been elected Fellow of the SPIE for achievements in semiconductor optical modulators and analog fiber optic links. Professor Young-Han Kim has received NSF Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award. His research program aims to provide a common set of conceptual, mathematical, and algorithmic tools for the emerging convergence of computation, control, and communication over networks, with the ultimate goal of developing a unified framework for characterizing fundamental performance limits of such systems. San Diego, CA, February 08, 2008 -- UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering professor Paul Siegel – a leading authority on coding for hard disk magnetic recording systems – has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering "for the invention and development of advanced coding techniques for digital recording systems." Professor Robert Hecht Nielsen has been named "Engineer Of The Year 2008 in San Diego", for his work on Confabulation Theory. This is an award by fourteen major technical societies, including the IEEE and AIAA. Professor Truong Nguyen has received "Best Undergraduate Teaching Award" for 2006-2007. This is a student voted award that recognizes extraordinary comitment to education by UCSD faculty. Two ECE Profs, Two Spin-Outs, Two Award Nominations - 07 Dec 2007. Products from two different companies spun out by electrical engineers at UC San Diego are finalists for CONNECT’s 2007 Most Innovative New Product “MIP” Award – in the Communications Technology & Hardware category. Professor Paul K.L. Yu has been elected Fellow of the IEEE for contributions to semiconductor waveguide modulators and detectors. Professor Pamela Cosman has been elected Fellow of the IEEE for contributions to image and video compression and wireless communications. Most Complex Silicon Phased Array Chip - 30 Oct 2007 UC San Diego electrical engineers have developed the world’s most complex “phased array” – or radio frequency integrated circuit. This DARPA-funded advance is expected to find its way into U.S. defense satellite communication and radar systems. In addition, the innovations in this chip design will likely spill over into commercial applications, such as automotive satellite systems for direct broadcast TV, and new methods for high speed wireless data transfer. Online Game Feeds Music Search Engine Project - 26 Sep 2007. UC San Diego electrical engineers and computer scientists are working together on a computerized system that will make it easy for people who are not music experts (like the senior author’s mom) to find the kind of music they want to listen to – without knowing the names of artists or songs. Professor Paul H. Siegel has been appointed as the holder of a CMRR Endowed Chair.This distinguished appointment is a reflection of the high regard in which Professor Siegel is held by the UCSD academic community. UC San Diego Establishes Department of NanoEngineering - 03 Jul 2007. Seeking to capitalize on the potential of a new generation of multi-functional nanoscale devices and special materials built on the scale of individual molecules, UC San Diego has established a new Department of NanoEngineering within its Jacobs School of Engineering effective July 1, 2007. SPIE has awarded a $2000 scholarship to Joshua Ray Windmiller, a Bachelor of Science student at the University of California, San Diego. His interests are in the areas of lightwave communications and nanoscale optics and is especially interested in nonlinear optics, nanophotonics, and optical fiber communications as they are burgeoning research endeavors. Read more... The University of California Sweeps RFIC Student Paper Awards - 15 Jun 2007. Engineering graduate students from three University of California campuses -- Berkeley, Davis and San Diego -- won first, second and third places respectively for the best student papers in the Radio Frequency Integrated Circuits (RFIC) portion of the prestigious 2007 IEEE MTT-S International Microwave Symposium (IMS 2007) held in Honolulu, HI, last week, June 3-8, 2007. Air Force Says Basic Research at UC San Diego Helps U.S. 'Anticipate Threats' - 14 Jun 2007. Pentagon official tells Congress that 5-year-old, $7 million UC San Diego nanostructured supersensors project is evidence that basic research can help U.S. anticipate threats; ECE's Yu-Hwa Lo is a co-PI on the multidisciplinary team that includes engineers in Calit2's Nano3 cleanroom facility. Professor Farrokh Najmabadi has received the IEEE Nuclear and Plasma Sciences Society (NPSS) Fusion Technology Award, to recognize outstanding contributions to research and development in the field of fusion technology. Electrical Engineering Grad Student Racks Up Awards - 14 May 2007. For his work on how semiconducting nanowires grow and behave, Shadi A. Dayeh, a graduate student in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) at the UCSD Jacobs School of Engineering, has recently earned a series of awards. Why Nanowires Make Great Photodetectors - 20 Apr 2007. The geometry of semiconducting nanowires makes them uniquely suited for light detection, according to a new UC San Diego study that highlights the possibility of nanowires as light detectors with single-photon sensitivity. Nanowires are crystalline fibers about one thousandth the width of a human hair, and their inherent properties are expected to enable new photodetector architectures for sensing, imaging, memory storage, intrachip optical communications and other nanoscale applications, according to a new study in an upcoming issue of the journal Nano Letters. Professor Massimo Franceschetti has received a Young Investigator Award sponsored by the Office of Naval Research to investigate diversity in wireless communication from a physical perspective. His work aims at revealing fundamental limits of multiple antenna systems and wireless networks. Starting from the laws of Electromagnetic propagation, it ties the physical aspect of communication to the information-theoretic aspects. Results will provide useful design guidelines for next generation wireless systems. Improved Automated Image Labeling Electrical engineers from UC San Diego report progress on the development of automated image labeling and retrieval techniques that will enable a new generation of image search engines. Professor James Buckwalter has received a Young Faculty award sponsored by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency for research in nonlinear pulse propagation in mixed-mode silicon integrated circuits. This work hopes to develop methods to tailor signal propagation on-chip and help future ICs beat limitations imposed by transistor and interconnect scaling. RFIC Phased Array Receiver Breakthrough - 07 Mar 2007. The University of California, San Diego (UCSD), provider of a leading program in mixed-signal, microwave and millimeter-wave RFICs, today announced that it has developed an 8-element RFIC phased array receiver covering the 6-18 GHz frequency range. Jan Cox has been named the recipient of the 2007 Betsy Faught Award in recognition of her excellence and outstanding achievement in the management of ECE. This is the UCSD's highest honor bestowed to MSOs. 4D Imaging Wins JSOE Research Prize - 26 Feb 2007 --- With a flash of light, photons simultaneously fly toward the face of a person waiting to be identified for security purposes. The packets of light bounce off the face and land on a specially engineered photon sensor that clocks when each photon arrived and uses the information to reconstruct a three dimensional image of the face almost instantaneously. UCSD Cell Phone Pioneer Elected to NAE - 12 Feb 2007 --- If you like the slim cell phone that you hardly know is in your pocket or purse, one of the many people you have to thank is Peter Asbeck, an electrical engineer from the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. And while you’re at it, congratulate him on earning one of the highest professional distinctions possible for an engineer – election to the National Academy of Engineering (NAE). UCSD Engineering, Technology and Computer Sciences Ranked 9th in the World - 08 Feb 2007 --- The University of California, San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering is the 9th best in the world for engineering/technology and computer sciences, according to an academic ranking of the top 100 world universities published online this month by the Institute of Higher Education, Shanghai Jiao Tong University. Professor Shayan Mookherjea has been awarded the NSF CAREER Award Alon Orlitsky, the inaugural holder of the QUALCOMM Endowed Chair in Information Theory and its Applications -- January 29, 2007 -- The University of California, San Diego today announced that Alon Orlitsky has been appointed the first holder of the QUALCOMM Endowed Chair in Information Theory and its Applications. Origami Lens Slims High Resolution Cameras -- January 26, 2007 -- Engineers at UC San Diego have built a powerful yet ultrathin digital camera by folding up the telephoto lens. This technology may yield lightweight, ultrathin, high resolution miniature cameras for unmanned surveillance aircraft, cell phones and infrared night vision applications. Ian Galton Named Best ECE Teacher -- December 12, 2006 -- Professor Ian Galton has been awarded the ECE Best Teacher Award. Galton primarily teaches subjects related to integrated circuit design with applications for communication systems. UCSD Grad Grabs Venture Funding -- December 6, 2006 -- Quanlight, an emerging LED (light-emitting diode) company whose core technology was developed at UC San Diego’s Jacobs School of Engineering, today announced a recent series A investment of $1 million from Blackbird Ventures Inc., a private venture funding group in San Diego. Quanlight anticipates closing its Series B round in the spring of 2007. UCSD Grad Wins Award for Functional Brain Imaging Insights -- December 6, 2006 -- David Wipf, a recent graduate of the electrical and computer engineering Ph.D. program at UC San Diego’s Jacobs School of Engineering, has won an Outstanding Student Paper Award at the 2006 NIPS Conference -- Neural Information Processing Systems -- for his work on human functional brain imaging. Jacobs School Student Leaders Tell Their Stories -- November 28, 2006 -- Sourobh Raychaudhuri and Barath Raghavan, both Ph.D. candidates at UC San Diego’s Jacob's School of Engineering, have received the R.B. Woolley Graduate Leadership Award for the 2006-2007 academic year. The $5,000 award recognizes continuing graduate students who have a record of notable academic achievements and demonstrate leadership in professional and Jacobs School activities. Optofluidics Researchers and Industry Representatives Meet To Discuss Future Work -- October 26, 2006 -- The UCSD division of Calit2 and ECE professor Shaya Fainman recently hosted the Optofluidics Translational Research and Commercialization Workshop. The invitation-only meeting brought together academic researchers affiliated with the DARPA Center for Optofluidic Integration and industry representatives. Professor Alon Orlitsky and two of his doctoral students, Narayana Prasad Santhanam and Junan Zhang, authored the paper selected for the 2006 award, "Universal Compression of Memoryless Sources Over Unknown Alphabets." UCSD Students Win Prestigious U.S. DoD Scholarship -- October 10, 2006 -- Four UC San Diego students are among the 32 nationwide recipients of the 2006 Science, Mathematics, and Research for Transformation (SMART) scholarship program run by the U.S. Department of Defense. Jacobs School Welcomes Eleven New Faculty -- October 2, 2006 -- As the 06/07 academic year begins, the UCSD Jacobs School of Engineering welcomes eleven new faculty hires, bringing the School’s total faculty membership to 175. Semeon Y. Litvin was selected as a 2006 SPIE scholarship winner. Litvin is an undergraduate student in the Optics program at the University of California, San Diego. His area of interest is in optics and superconductors. Prof. Pamela Cosman has been appointed to be the new director of the Center for Wireless Communications (CWC), effective July 1, 2006. Founded in 1995, the CWC is one of the nation's premier centers for research in and education on wireless communications. 6/28/06: Vice Chancellor for Research, Richard Attiyeh, announced the appointment of Farrokh Najmabadi as the Director of the Center for Energy Research at UC San Diego, effective July 1, 2006. Professor Najmabadi is a member of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and has served as the Center's Deputy Director since September 1, 2004. Read more... 6/28/06: The surveillance system, dubbed "Eagle Eyes" was developed by UCSD ECE professor Mohan Trivedi and his team of graduate students and researchers. Read more... Sourobh Raychaudhuri is one of two recipients of the Jacobs School of Engineering R. B. Woolley Graduate Leadership Award for the 2006-07 academic year. Professor Curt Schurgers has been selected as a Hellman Fellow for 2006. The purpose of the Hellman Faculty Fellows Awards, funded through the generosity of Chris and Warren Hellman, is to substantially support the research and creative activities of promising assistant professors who show capacity for great distinction in their work. 3/31/06:U.S. News Ranks Electrical Engineering 16th Read more... 3/28/06: Prof. Radic has demonstrated a way to translate signals in optical fiber between the current infrared standard and a wide range of other bands of light. technology that could benefit airborne, undersea, sensing and other communications. Read more... Shadi A. Dayeh, Hamed Masnadi-Shirazi & Antoni Chan were selected as the Outstanding TAs of the ECE Department. 2/13/06:More than 400 experts from around the world participated in a weeklong workshop to inaugurate Calit2's new Information Theory and Applications (ITA) Center. Streaming video of key presentations and tutorials is now available. Read more... 2/7/06: The university has appointed Professor Alon Orlitsky to direct the new initiative Information Theory and Applications Center (ITA). Read more... 2/2/06: Professor Nguyen's innovative technologies in the area of video delivery to mobile devices and thin-clients, using existing communication channels, are shown to have a practical impact. Read more... Robert Saperstein, our 2005 JSOE Woolley Fellow, has been selected as one of the 2006 Summer Graduate Teaching Fellows at UCSD. 1/28/06: Professor Acampora is part of UCSD's Center for Networked Systems, a collaboration ontopics ranging from broadband access to Internet epidemiology. View his talk in the CNS half-yearly Research Review. Read more... 11/16/05: Professor Milstein is the first holder of the Ericsson Endowed Chair in Wireless Communication Access Techniques Read more... 10/3/05: Professor Sadik Esener, " Nanotechnology will allow doctors to deliver an array of promising new anti-cancer treatments to the exact positions in the body where they are needed". Read more... 9/12/05: Professor Tara Javidi "Time and again our theoretical research has shown how the stochastic nature of the wireless channel can significantly change the rules-of-thumb of networking," Read more... 8/19/05: Information Theory faculty receive 4 of the 27 grantsawarded in 2005 by the NSF Theoretical Foundations program. Read more... 8/8/05: Edward Yu, "Increasing Solar Cell Efficiency Via Incorporation of Engineered Metallic Structures." Read more... 6/22/05: Prof. Nuno Vasconcelos receives a five year CAREER award by NSF, for work incomputer vision. Read more... 5/20/05:Professor Vardy has been selected as a Fullbright Scholar, 2005-2006 5/2/05:Professor Massimo Franceschetti receives the 2005S. A. Schelkunoff Award for the best paper in the IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation. 1/1/05:Professor Truong Nguyen elected Fellow of the IEEE for contributions to the theory and applications of filterbanks and wavelets.