Integrated Circuits for the Internet of Things

Title of the research project

ULPIoT - Ultra Low Power and highly-scalable Interface for the Internet of Thing

Scientific area 

Analog-Mixed-Signal Integrated Circuits

Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow

Orazio Aiello

Abstract  

The ULPIoT project addresses the design of ultra-low power Integrated Circuits (ICs) for Internet of Things (IoT) applications by a radically new approach, aimed to translate analog functions into digital, in order to overcome the limits of traditional analog circuits and to unify the analog and digital IC design flows.

Description of the research project 

The ULPIoT project addresses the design of novel-in-concept integrated circuits (ICs) enabling the Internet of Things.  More specifically, ULPIoT moves towards the idea of re-thinking analog and mixed-signal functions in digital terms, in order to address the fundamental challenges of energy-efficiency, size shrinking, technology portability and reduction of design effort in incoming IoT applications.

For this purpose, a completely novel design approach has been developed, which encompasses the fully automatic synthesis and layout generation of analog and mixed-signal blocks from high-level descriptions (e.g. in Verilog, VHDL,..) at minimum effort and by the very same software tools and methodologies adopted in the digital IC flow.

This approach leads to IC designs which are natively portable across technology nodes (e.g. from 40nm to 28nm) and highly reconfigurable, thus enabling dynamic energy-quality scaling, which is critical in tightly energy constrained IoT application scenarios, as well as a low design effort and a fast time-to-market.

The project is based on a joint collaboration between the National University of Singapore  and the Politecnico di Torino.

Impact on fellow career and on society 

As an awardee of the MSCA Global Fellowship, Orazio Aiello had the chance to spend two years at the National University of Singapore, interacting with top academics and participating to important conferences in the field of analog and digital ICs. The project has contributed to enhance the European research on semiconductors through the acquisition of know-how and competences from advanced research centers. 

Short CV of Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow 

Orazio Aiello received the B.Sc. degree in Electronic Engineering and the M.Sc. degree in Microelectronic Engineering from the University of Catania in 2005 and 2008, respectively. He also graduated from the Scuola Superiore di Catania (SSC) in 2009 and received the Ph.D. degree from the Politecnico di Torino in 2013.

Orazio Aiello has gained research experience in different segments of Integrated Circuits (ICs) design. His skills have been developed in international Universities as well as in important semiconductor companies. He has been working in Italy, The Netherlands, Australia and Singapore.

Advisors 

Paolo Crovetti, DET - Dipartimento di Elettronica e Telecomunicazioni, Politecnico di Torino

Massimo Alioto, ECE-Electrical and Computer Engineering Department,  National University of Singapore

Project Partner Organisation

National University of Singapore, ECE-Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, Green IC group

ULPIoT project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No . 703988 

  • Budget: 247.730 euro
  • Start date: 1/02/2017
  • End date: 28/02/2020