February 14, 2000
Prof. Gary Fedder and three ECE graduate students have submitted a project that has placed among the top five in Phase I, and will go on to Phase II, in the SRC Copper Design Challenge. Fedder and students Xu Zhu, Hasnain Lakdawala and Hao Luo, submitted a proposal titled "Micromachined Tunable On-chip High-Q Resonator" to the contest which is being sponsored by the Semiconductor Research Corporation, Novellus, UMC Group and SpeedFam-IPEC. These companies believe that emerging semiconductor manufacturing technologies, such as copper, provide opportunities to create new design architectures that can significantly improve the functionality and performance of ICs and the systems in which they will be used. They hope to leverage the creativity available at leading engineering universities to speed the adoption of novel new approaches to IC design at 0.18-micron transistor size. In July, 43 teams from 34 universities submitted design proposals in Phase I. For Phase II, 15 of these teams have been selected to enter their layouts for actual silicon fabrication at UMC. The devices will then be returned to the contestants for test and evaluation and will be judged on measured performance data compared to simulation data. An overall winner will be announced at SEMICON West 2000 in July and the top three finalists will present their designs at TECHCON 2000 in September. Learn more about MEMS research in ECE.