Conference Focuses on the Quality of Electronic Design

The annual International Symposium on Quality Electronic Design meets for its 10th year

8 January 2009

The complexity of semiconductor processes has brought with it many diverse disciplines involved in creating electronic circuits and systems. By now, the need for improving the communication and coordination among these groups, and between industry and academia, has never been greater.

The need was clear a decade ago to Senior Member Ali A. Iranmanesh, an IC industry veteran with a keen understanding of the interplay among the organizations busy creating products and bringing them to production. His efforts led to the annual International Symposium on Quality Electronic Design (ISQED), which meets for its 10th year in San Jose, Calif., from 16 to 18 March.

“ISQED is a truly multidisciplinary conference,” he says, pointing to its sponsorship by three IEEE societies (Electron Devices, Reliability, and Circuits and Systems), in coordination with the Association for Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group on Design Automation. While the conference encompasses many goals, ISQED has a clear focus: the design of semiconductor circuits and systems with an emphasis on quality, manufacturing, yield, and reliability.

Perhaps the conference’s most important goal is to share ideas among disciplines. “Many quality concepts and procedures used successfully in semiconductor manufacturing could be applied to design tools, methodologies, and management practices as well,” notes Iranmanesh.

“In ISQED we try to strike a balance between academic research and their real applications in electronic design,” explains James Lei, chair for the subcommittee on EDA Methodologies, Tools, Flows & IP Cores; Interoperability and Reuse session. “Each one of our conference’s technical subcommittees typically has one chair from academia or a research institution and one from industry.”

Lei knows first-hand of the attention conference organizers can offer would-be authors. “A paper I submitted to the first ISQED, when I was still in graduate school, was too late to be accepted,” he recalls. Unbelievably, I got an e-mail from Dr. Iranmanesh, encouraging me to continue writing papers and submitting them.” Thanks in part to that encouragement, Lei got involved with ISQED and has been a committee member for six years.

About 120 papers will be presented at the conference on four parallel tracks, encompassing 26 sessions including keynote speeches, panels, tutorials, and embedded sessions in conjunction with an accompanying exhibition of design-automation, test, packaging, manufacturing, and related products.

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