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Integrated circuits research lab established at NDSU

The Radio Frequency/Digital VLSI (Very Large Scale Integration) Intregrated Circuit Laboratory has been established at NDSU’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering through a grant by National Science Foundation.

The project, titled "II-NEW: Probe Station to Characterize Body Area Network Sensor ICs for Cyber Physical Systems Applications" is funded through NSF award 1628961.

Debasis Dawn, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, is the project's principal investigator. Scott C. Smith, professor, and Na Gong and Jinhui Wang, assistant professors of electrical and computer engineering department, are the co-principal investigators.

Dawn is working toward developing Body Area Network integrated circuits, known as BAN, that focus on circuits and sensors that adapt to body movements or environmental changes. Dawn said an example is a power amplifier circuit block that is tunable between various frequency bands and adaptable to different types of information or communication distances. “The circuit blocks can be integrated to implement ultra-low-power transceiver integrated circuits consuming only tens of milliwatts of power for BAN sensors worn by humans and next generation computer-to-computer high-speed communication via sensors embedded on mechanical bodies,” he said.

NDSU researchers can use the lab to pursue a wide area of research topics, such as system-on-chip silicon-based integrated circuits, silicon-germanium radio frequency and millimeter-wave integrated circuits for wireless network communication involving humans and computers; communication radar and sensors ranging from hand-held scanners for bio-medical imaging to wearable weapon scanners for military applications; logic circuits for ultra-low power computer chips; extreme environment integrated circuits for use in outer space and high temperature power electronic applications; side-channel attack resistant integrated circuits; or radio frequency nanotechnology.

“This will further significantly aid faculty and students to conduct fundamental research, which will directly benefit the research community from the tests and analysis enabled by the probe station equipment,” Dawn said. “We are very excited to establish such a research infratsructure facility that is only available in big chip makers such as Intel, IBM and only in few top research universities in the nation. This may potentially put NDSU’s electrical and computer engineering department in a leading position among other top schools in the United States.”

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