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  • A Cross-Layered Approach to Design Reliable Hardware for Computing Systems

    Tue, Nov 21, 2017 @ 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars

    Speaker: William H. Robinson, Vanderbilt University

    Talk Title: A Cross-Layered Approach to Design Reliable Hardware for Computing Systems

    Abstract: Reliability analysis of integrated circuits (ICs) has become a greater concern in the development of computing systems. Technology scaling offers more transistors to enable system-on-a-chip (SoC) integration, but it also means more transistors that can be affected by radiation-induced faults. Designers must consider how those faults impact the entire computing system by including levels of abstraction in both hardware and software. Cross-layered modeling and simulation enables a better understanding of the complex interactions among particle physics, fabrication technology, processor architecture, and the software stack in order to develop reliable computing systems.

    This talk describes a novel method of modeling radiation strikes of varying intensities in intra-pipeline combinational logic, while incorporating important characteristics including: (1) logical, electrical, and timing masking factors in circuit operation, (2) automated placement for logic cell adjacency, and (3) well geometry for a charge-sharing-based model of ion strikes. This talk will also highlight: (1) methods for characterizing microprocessors for radiation-induced failures, (2) methods for mitigating faults in microprocessors, and (3) open questions regarding microprocessor resilience.

    Biography: William H. Robinson received his B.S. in electrical engineering from the Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) in 1996 and his M.S. in electrical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) in 1998. He received his Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from Georgia Tech in 2003. In August 2003, Dr. Robinson joined the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) at Vanderbilt University as an Assistant Professor, and he was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure in 2010. Currently, he serves as an Associate Dean in the School of Engineering.

    Dr. Robinson leads the Security And Fault Tolerance (SAF-T) Research Group at Vanderbilt University, whose mission is to conduct transformational research that addresses the reliability and security of computing systems. He also co-leads the Explorations in Diversifying Engineering Faculty Initiative (EDEFI) (pronounced "edify"), which investigates the institutional, technical, social, and cultural factors that impact the current underrepresentation of African Americans in engineering faculty positions. His major honors include selection for a National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program Award and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Computer Science Study Panel, both in 2008. Dr. Robinson is a Senior Member of both the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM). He is a member of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), and a lifetime member of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE).

    Host: Murali Annavaram, annavara@usc.edu

    Location: Hughes Aircraft Electrical Engineering Center (EEB) - 248

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Gerrielyn Ramos

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