Conference News

PRIME 2017 & SMACD 2017

The 13th Conference on PhD Research in Microelectronics and Electronics (PRIME 2017) and the 14th International Conference on Synthesis, Modeling, Analysis and Simulation Methods and Applications to Circuit Design (SMACD 2017), organized respectively by the University of Catania, Italy (general chair Salvatore Pennisi, general co-chair Gaetano Palumbo), and the University of Salerno, Italy (general chair Giulia Di Capua), took place in parallel at the Naxos Beach Conference Centre in Giardini Naxos, Italy, from 12th to 15th June 2017. Both conferences were technically sponsored by the IEEE and the IEEE Circuits and Systems Society (CASS), together with its Chapter, the Central & South Italy Section. Additionally, PRIME 2017 was technically sponsored by the IEEE Solid-State Circuits Society (SSCS) Italian Chapter, whereas SMACD 2017 was technically sponsored by the IEEE Council on Electronic Design Automation (CEDA). PRIME 2017 and SMACD 2017 were also honored by the presence of the IEEE CASS President Franco Maloberti during the entire conference period.

Giardini Naxos, a vibrant beach resort center, very close to the world-renowned town of Taormina (that hosted the G7 summit a few days earlier) and surrounded by the UNESCO natural site Mount Etna, the highest active volcano in Europe, welcomed the attendees with an enjoyable summer weather and Sicilian hospitality. The result was an unprecedented success with more than 200 attendees and over 160 presented works. The 2017 edition of PRIME received a total of 136 submissions. The PRIME Technical Program Committee, led by Gianluca Giustolisi and Massimo Alioto, with the support of recognized experts from all across the world, selected 96 top quality papers for oral presentation. The 2017 edition of SMACD received a total number of 100 submissions. The SMACD Technical Program Committee, led by the Technical Program Committee Chairs Francisco V. Fernández, Nuno Horta and Günhan Dündar, with the support of recognized expert reviewers from academia and industry, did an accurate work selecting 62 papers for oral presentation and 10 papers for poster presentation.

PRIME 2017 and SMACD 2017 jointly offered a multitude of opportunities for the attendees to gain knowledge about the relevant CASS topics, particularly on: micro/nanoelectronics; semiconductors; analog/digital signal processing; computer-aided design; analog/digital/mixed/RF IC design; integrated power ICs; sensors/systems and MEMS; RF, microwave and mm-wave circuits; VLSI and SoC applications; visual signal processing; energy harvesting; automotive, flexible electronics, and further technical trends & challenges. On such topics, three days of technical sessions with 4 oral sessions running in parallel plus 2 poster sessions were organized. The technical program of PRIME 2017 and SMACD 2017 also included a pre-conference day, with a workshop from CADENCE Academic Network and a tutorial from STMicroelectronics. Three keynotes were also given, one per day: “System in Package Products and Trends” by Francesco Pulvirenti (STMicroelectronics); “System in Package design challenge” by Roberto G. Massolini (Texas Instruments); and “3D NAND memories technology trends” by Tommaso Vali (Micron Semiconductor). As by tradition, the conferences have promoted a Company Fair, where the attendees had the opportunity to meet industrial exhibitors, including the three gold sponsors Micron Semiconductor, DIALOG Semiconductor, STMicroelectronics, the five bronze sponsors CADENCE Academic Network, ON Semiconductor, Coilcraft, InvenSense, Texas Instruments, and also Maxim Integrated.

SMACD 2017 also promoted the annual EDA students' Competition, co-organized by Rafael Castro-Lopez and Ralf Sommer, where MSc and PhD students competed with one unique but challenging goal: "Improving design automation for integrated circuits and systems". A $1,000 prize has been as usual granted to the winner of the Competition. As result of the IEEE CASS Call for Outreach Initiative 2017, the financial support proposal for SMACD 2017 students’ Competition was found worthy of funding from the IEEE CASS Outreach Committee, which supported the conference Competition with $500. IEEE CEDA has also promoted the event, funding 500$ of the total prize. A committee of experts from academia and industry interacted with the students during the Competition sessions and selected the winner based on the quality of the paper, its presentation and its live demo. The Competition prize was granted by President Maloberti during the gala dinner.

The technical program of both conferences ended with the award ceremony. As by tradition in PRIME, the best ranked papers were distinguished with Gold Leaf, Silver Leaf and Bronze Leaf Awards and partially sponsored by River Publishers. Besides, 9 students attending PRIME were awarded with a scholarship granted by IEEE CASS. The most outstanding contributions in SMACD were also awarded with 1 Best Paper and 2 Runner-up Best Paper certificates. Finally, President Maloberti awarded Salvatore Pennisi with the IEEE Fellow CASS certificate. 

The Technical and Steering Committees of PRIME and SMACD 2017 thank everyone for attending and participating and invite to attend the next conferences edition, which will be again in co-location in Prague, Czech Republic, from July, 2nd to 5th, 2018.

Photos from the PRIME 2017 & SMACD 2017 can be found on their websites:,

Giulia Di Capua, University of Salerno, Italy (Email:

© IEEE CAS Society 2017