Silicon integrated circuits based on CMOS technology form the basis for complex electronic systems with more than 10 billion transistors in a single chip. As the scaling of solid-state devices through Moore’s Law reaches an end and there is a search to expand the capabilities of CMOS technology to new applications through the addition of new materials (“more than Moore”), biological components represent a largely untapped opportunity. Living systems have lipid bilayer membranes, which act as capacitors, storing charge as ionic gradients across these membranes. Proteins that permeate these membranes (transmembrane proteins) are versatile biological electronic devices, controlling ion flow through the membrane. These proteins can harvest energy from the environment (and store this energy as electrochemical potentials) and can sense the environment (other molecules, temperature, pH, voltage, mechanical forces) and signal this by opening or closing the ion channel through the membrane. As a first foray into this exciting new area of exploration, we powered an integrated circuit using adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the energy currency of living systems, by integrating with a CMOS circuit an artificial cell membrane containing ATPase pumps that hydrolyze ATP and pump ions, producing a transmembrane potential that can power the solid-state integrated circuit. Despite these primitive first steps, this co-integration of CMOS and transmembrane proteins has the potential for impact a large number of applications: molecular diagnostics and drug discovery by providing new nanoscale sophistication to electrophysiological interfaces; new sensing systems for smell and taste; and the ability to detect and treat disease with real-time feedback through autonomous hybrid systems that could be symbiotic probes in living organisms. There may also be possibility to exploit the mechanical nature of ion channels and the ultra-low-voltage operation that they support to create hybrid ultra-low-power biological co-processors to augment CMOS in signal processing and computational applications.
Mark Papermaster, CTO and SVP of Technology and Engineering at AMD, will take closer look at various challenges companies face when they set out to build winning products. Drawing up on more than 30 years of engineering experience, Mark explores innovation and what defines a great product, as well as his thoughts on the role of leadership to create an environment to enable both disruptive thinking combined with strong execution. He will describe three key elements, along with examples of his experience at IBM, Apple, Cisco, and AMD.
The first is goal clarity and definition that will distinguish the design as a great product. This requires discipline to think through not just the product itself, but how it will be used. The experience matters. The high level design then has to be rigorous to lay out a plan of the enabling factors, and the big problems to be solved.
Second is establishing a team that’s set up for success. Plotting out the right leadership, skills, geography, and culture is key.
Finally, execution always has to be prioritized. You can’t afford to miss the product’s market window. What you measure and milestone is what you care about – it sets the behavior of the team.
Mark will summarize by highlighting how the evolution of innovation and great products of the last several decades has set the stage for a huge inflection point in computing. We are now entering the era of immersive computing which will fundamentally change the role computing plays in our daily lives.
Modern electronics does amazing things, but biology routinely performs feats no current electronics can match. Every animal can learn on short timescales, defend against unforeseen threats, self-assemble and repair, all with great resilience. The shortest path to incorporating these features in our gadgets is to understand how biology works, then adapt these techniques to the semiconductor world. Towards this end, biologists are in the midst of reconstructing and understanding the entire nervous system of small animals, while device physicists and software folks work out the devices and algorithms that might duplicate or better what biology has long done. This talk will give an overview of the investigation into biological systems, and some hints, based on our current understanding, of how this might be incorporated into our electronic gizmos. These techniques have the potential to add capabilities to our systems that are both different and more powerful, than those come from scaling and Moore alone.
The ever-increasing performance demands of performance visual and accelerated computing has resulted in GPUs becoming some of the most complex ASICs being built today. These multi-billion transistor processors push design technologies to their limits and require incredibly robust implementation methodologies. At the same time, there are new performance demands from both the traditional source of gaming thanks to higher resolution displays and virtual reality applications as well as new GPU uses like deep learning and autonomous driving. While we’ve been able to ride the performance, power and cost gains from process scaling over the last two decades to deliver GPUs with ever increasing capabilities, this rate of process scaling improvement is slowing down. It is clear that the rate of innovations in the design implementation areas will need to pick up if we are to keep delivering performance gains to our customers at the historical rate. In this talk we’ll cover the state of the art in visual and accelerated computing, the design approaches we use to implement these highly complex processors and finally propose ideas that will ensure that in spite of slowing process scaling, we’re able to continue to deliver GPUs of ever-increasing capabilities over the next decade.
Few industries are as primed for radical change in the years ahead as the worldwide automotive market. Advanced driver assistance system (ADAS) features are increasingly common in entry-level/affordable new car models, and today’s high-end vehicles commonly receive over-the-air software updates and feature semi-autonomous driving functionality. Meanwhile, Silicon Valley start-ups and established auto OEMs alike are rushing to deliver the first true “self-driving” cars. Among the most critical technologies driving this revolution are:
1. Highly integrated CMOS-based radar solutions that can replace today’s bulky, power-consuming hardware for radar-based ADAS with sensors the size of postage stamps – for self-driving cars cocoons of such sensors are needed to enable a reliable 360 surround view of the vehicle environment
2. Gigabit Ethernet in-car communication technology enabling deterministic performance and real-time transport of massive data sets
3. Advancements in vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) technologies that support secure data exchanges between high-speed vehicles and roadside infrastructure.
4. Increasingly rapid adoption of next-generation RFID and Near Field Communication (NFC) technologies for a broad range of connectivity innovations.
However, despite the rapid advancement of these Connected Car technologies, the era of autonomous vehicles cannot truly arrive until consumers really trust that their vehicles are save against hacking. This discussion will present an in-depth examination of the specific technologies driving the autonomous vehicles revolution of the future, while detailing the security, reliability and safety requirements necessary to realize its full potential.
DAC is the premier conference devoted to the design and automation of electronic systems (EDA), embedded systems and software (ESS), and intellectual property (IP).
DAC 2017 will be held in Austin, Texas, at the Austin Convention Center. Get details about travel, hotels, and area attractions in one convenient spot.