Integrated Circuits (ICs) and Systems are the basic building blocks of the electronics industry. With rapid advancement, companies are constantly looking to design smaller and faster chips. What can we next expect from this industry? Reliability and robustness are emerging recently as key challenges in IC design. Traditionally, Integrated Circuits and Systems (ICs) were designed to minimize area and thus cost. Performance also was a key issue from very early on. Later, power became an important design consideration. In addition, optimizing yield always has been an important goal as well. Increasingly now, design must also ensure reliability and robustness of ICs. In the past, this was handled on technology level. It was ensured that the individual devices (transistors, wires) were reliable enough. As we move to ever smaller manufacturing geometries, it becomes increasingly more difficult to ensure individual device reliability, however. At the same time, the number of devices keeps increasing exponentially due to Moore’s Law. These two forces create a strong imperative for design to ensure reliability and robustness. Recently, cross-layer approaches have started to appear to achieve this goal. This talk will give an overview about the current situation of IC and Embedded System Design. It will address reliability and robustness challenges and report especially on research activities and results on Electronic Design Automation (EDA) techniques at TUM which address these challenges. A brief overview of educational activities of TUM in Munich and Singapore will also be given.
Ulf Schlichtmann is chair professor and head of the institute for Electronic Design Automation at TUM. His research addresses design, analysis and optimization of integrated circuits and systems – primarily digital, but also analog. His teaching broadly covers EDA. Ulf has a Dipl.-Ing. (MSc) degree and a doctorate from TUM. He also holds an MSc-level degree in technology business from the University of Hagen. From 1994-2003, he spent about 10 years at Siemens and Infineon in various engineering, management and executive positions, before joining TUM in 2003. He continues to cooperate closely with industry and advises both small and large industrial companies. From 2008-2011, he was Dean of TUM’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Currently, he serves as Dean of Studies for international programs. He has initiated and continues to direct two MSc and one BSc program at TUM Asia in Singapore.