IEEE Circuits and Systems Society Newsletter | Volume 14 | Issue 1 | February 2020 | CURRENT/PAST ISSUES


German Workshop on Circuits and Systems


The German chapter of the IEEE Circuits and Systems Society organised a work shop on advances in circuits and systems on the 28th of January in Fraunhofer Institute of Microelectronics Circuits and Systems in Duisburg. Chaired by Prof. Bhaskar Choubey, the event attracted 70 attendees, a number of them being CAS members from Germany, industry as well as young professionals. Prof. Andreas Andreou from John Hopkins University delivered the IEEE CAS distinguished lecture on circuits in 14nm FinFET CMOS technology for memories and imagers. This was followed Prof. Maurits Ortmanns from Ulm University presenting trends in analogue to digital converters, particularly on their noise performance. The first industrial talk in the day was presented by Dr. Bern Buxbaum, the CEO of PMDTec on new imaging sensors designed for 3-D imaging in PMD. He also showcased their integration in mobile phones. Prof. Friedel Gerfers from Technical University of Berlin presented on data converters in SOI process. The lunch break provided a very good opportunity for interaction between speakers and the audiences. Post-lunch, Prof. Peter Haring-Bolivar from Siegen University invited circuits researchers to explore the Terahertz regime for a number of sensing applications. Prof. Rainer Kokozinski from Fraunhofer Institute in Duibsurg discussed various wireless implantable devices and circuits. The second industrial talk was presented by Dr. Daniel Dzahini, the CTO of Xdigit on a new two-stage architecture of Ramp ADC followed by a SAR ADC for image sensors. The esteemed Prof. Franco Maloberti from Pavia then changed the entire discussions towards future of learning and universities, particularly in the context of electronic circuits. The event also heard from Prof. Amara Amara, the president of IEEE CASS on his work in applying AI in decreasing childhood mortality in Africa. Dr. Yoko Uwate then explained the activities of the WiCAS-YP in IEEE CASS as well as described the support available to regional chapters from IEEE CASS on behalf of the VP of Regional Activities and Membership, Prof. Yoshifumi Nishio. The event ended with the final industrial talk by Dr. Alessandro Brunetti of Caaleste on utilising layout enhancements to improve pixel performance. Prof. Choubey, the host has received several notes from industrial as well as academic audiences thanking the CAS Society for organising this workshop and requesting more events in future.


Photos: Dr. Buxbaum answering questions on 3D imaging (left). Prof. Ortmanns explaining ADCs (middle) and Prof. Maloberti explaining his vision of future (right).

Bhaskar Choubey, German CASS Chapter 

Santa Clara Valley Chapter (SCV) Report

IEEE Circuits and Systems Society (CASS) held a technical lecture on April 11th 2019 titled “Enabling Wireless Autonomous Systems Using 5G” given by Dr. Nageen Himayat who is the Director of Intelligent Distributed Edge Networks Labs at Intel. The total attendance was 51. Dr. Himayat articulated on the huge economic and societal impact of Autonomous Wireless Systems (WAS) while outlining significant challenges in meeting the reliability, latency and scalability requirements of these safety critical applications. On April 25th, Dr. Alyssa Apsel (CASS DL) from Cornell University gave a lecture titled “Flexible Radios and Flexible Networks.” In her lecture, Dr. Apsel described various approaches to drive the power down in radio networks that span across circuits and systems while adding flexibility to adapt across protocols and networks and work under changing device technologies. The total attendance was 28. 


Left Photo: Lecture with Dr. Nageen Himayat. From left to right, George Chen (Secretary), Robert S. Ogg (Advisor), Nageen Himayat (Intel), Imran Bashir (Chair), Johnathan David (Advisor), Mojtaba Sharifzadeh (SSCS-Chair). Right Photo: CASS Lecture with Dr. Alyssa Apsel “Flexible Radios and Flexible Network.” From left to right, Mojtaba Sharifzadeh (SSCS-Chair), Robert S. Ogg (Advisor), Julian Tham (Cypress), Dr. Alyssa Apsel (CASS DL), Amit Jha (Vice Chair).


Left Photo: CASS AI4I Forum Fall 2019. Dr. S. Y. Kung giving a lecture on Xnet. Middle Photo:CASS AI4I Forum Fall 2019. Pete Warden (Google) receiving a certificate from CASS. Right Photo: CASS AI4I Forum Fall 2019. Ephrem Wu (left) receiving a certificate from Tong Zhang (Intel, AI4I event organizer).


Left Photo: CASS AI4I Forum Fall 2019. Jianhui Li (Intel) answering questions from the audience. Right Photo: CASS AI4I Forum Fall 2019. View of the lecture hall at SC-9 Intel, Santa Clara during the event.

On September 6th, the Aritificial Intelligence for Industry (AI4I) Fall 2019 was held at SC-9 Auditorium, Intel in Santa Clara. This half day sold-out event hosted four speakers and the total attendance as 148. The first speaker of the event was Dr. S. Y. Kung from Princeton University and the title of his lecture was “From Deep Learning to X-Learning: An Internal and Explainable Learning for XA.” In his talk, Dr. Kung described an Xnet that is used to simultaneously train the structure and parameters of the net while facilitating Internal Neuron's Explainability so as to fully support DARPA's Explainable AI (i.e. XAI or AI3.0). This is a superior approach when compared to Back-propagation (BP), an external learning paradigm, whose supervision is exclusively accessed via the external interfacing nodes (i.e. input/output neurons). The second speaker of the forum was Pete Warden (Google) who covered the emerging requirements of deep learning workloads, including the barriers that are preventing more widespread deployment on low-energy systems. The third speaker of the forum was Ephrem Wu who is a Sr. Director in the Silicon Architecture division at Xilinx. Ephrem outlined the performance requirements of FPGA-based neural-network accelerators and the strategies for meeting those challenges. The fourth and last speaker of the forum was Jianhui Li who is a Principal Engineer at Intel.  In his talk Jianhui analyzed deep learning algorithms from compute performance perspective and discussed how key software optimizations unleash the power of AI hardware from the cloud to the edge. 


Left Photo: CASS DL Event with Dr. Shanti Pavan “Dissecting Design Choices in Continuous-time Delta-Sigma Converters”. From left to right, George Chen (CASS-Secretary), Jonathan David (Advisor), Amit Jha (CASS-Vice Chair), Dr. Shanti Pavan (CASS DL), Robert S. Ogg (Advisor). Middle Photo: CASS Lecture event with Dr. Christopher Hull, “Millimeter-Wave Power Amplifiers in FinFET Technology”. Right Photo: CASS Distinguished Lecturer event with Dr. Chris Guo Giun, "Algorithm/Architecture Co-design for Smart Signals and Systems in Cognitive Cloud/Edge"

On September 13th, Dr. Chris Gwo Giun (CASS DL) gave a lecture titled “Algorithm / Architecture Co-Design for Smart Signals and Systems In Cognitive Cloud/Edge” and the total attendance was 17. Dr. Chris Gwo Giun introduced the concept of concurrent exploration of algorithm and architecture entitled Algorithm/Architecture Co-exploration (AAC). This methodology introduces a paradigm shift in advanced system design from System-on-a-Chip to Cloud and Edge as algorithms with high accuracy become exceedingly more complex and Edge/IoT generated data becomes increasingly bigger. Dr. Shanti Pavan (CASS DL) gave a lecture on September 26th “Dissecting Design Choices in Continuous-time Delta-Sigma Converters” and the total attendance was 40. In his talk, Dr. Pavan gave a survey of alternatives for the design of power efficient single-loop continuous-time delta sigma converters while underscoring their unique features, differences and specifications. Dr. Christopher Hull (Intel) gave a lecture titled “Millimeter-Wave Power Amplifiers In FinFET Technology” on October 16th and the total attendance was 42. Dr. Hull gave an overview of specifications for fifth generation cellular communications standards (5G) targeting Gb/s data-rates and the benefits of CMOS FINFET technology when it comes to integration and scaling. A major portion of the lecture was dedicated to the circuit design process and challenges. 


Left Photo: CASS Lecture event with Dr. Claude Gauthier, “Automotive Ethernet and Functional Safety”. Middle Photo: CASS Lecture event with Dr. Waleed Khalil, “VCO Design Challenges and Solutions for mm-Wave Applications”. Right Photo: CASS Lecture Event with Dr. Sorin P. Voinigescu, "Towards monolithic quantum computing processors in production FDSOI CMOS technology"

On November 1st, Dr. Waleed Khalil gave a lecture titled “VCO Design Challenges and Solutions for mm-Wave Applications” and the total attendance was 32. The lecture generated lots of Q&A and interest from the audience. On December 12th, Dr. Sorin P. Voinigescu gave a lecture titled, “Towards monolithic quantum computing processors in production FDSOI CMOS technology” and the total attendance was 40. Dr. Voinigescu gave a brief introduction to quantum computing and covered various processors and published qubit technologies and their trade-offs. CASS now has its own channel on IEEE TV for streaming of previously recorded lectures (Google “IEEE TV Circuits and Systems”). Please visit our website @ and join the email list to receive notification of future events and instructions on joining remotely through Zoom. If you have any feedback or suggestions, please email us:

Imran Bashir, Santa Clara CASS Chapter Chair