ECE Seminar with Lingkai Kong

4:00 pm on Thursday, March 28, 2013
Photonics Center, 8 Saint Mary’s St., Room 339
Energy-Efficient Communication at mm-Wave Frequency: From System Design to Circuit Implementations

With Lingkai Kong
Postdoctoral Researcher
Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
University of California, Berkeley

Faculty Host: Enrico Bellotti

Refreshments will be served outside Room 339 at 3:45 p.m.

Abstract: Integrated circuit design is evolving rapidly. It is an exciting moment to explore new design methodologies for both circuits and systems despite the slowdown of CMOS scaling. Vertical integration approaches can be explored to co-optimize between different components and different layers to improve overall system performance as well as energy efficiency.

This talk describes how mm-wave wireless communication systems can achieve multiple Gb/s data link while maintaining high energy-efficiency. Advances in wireless technologies have enabled the rapid growth in number and in functionality of mobile devices. Consequently, emerging applications for these mobile devices will demand data rates of multiple Gb/s, but the power consumption and the cost are the major bottleneck. Our design of such a high data rate system utilizes the 7GHz bandwidth at the unlicensed 60GHz band, achieving orders of magnitude improvement in efficiency, and can be fully integrated onto CMOS technology including antennas.

We will illustrate how our vertical integration approach guides the design of this system by connecting the design of each building component with the overall system performance and power consumption. In particular, we will describe how our simple system level optimization provides the design criteria for a phased-array transceiver, inspiring our new transmitter architecture. Both the architecture and the circuit techniques enabling this architecture will be discussed in detail. We will also demonstrate our work on the co-optimization between electronics and antenna design, achieving enhanced performance of the overall system with reduced packaging cost. Signal processing is another important yet power hungry part of this system. Mixed-signal, rather than conventional DSP approach, is investigated and shows significant advantages in efficiency.

About the Speaker: Lingkai Kong (S '07) received his Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from University of California, Berkeley, in 2012, and the B.S. degree in mathematics and physics from Tsinghua University, Beijing, China, in 2007. He is currently a postdoctoral researcher in the department of EECS at University of California, Berkeley. He has held internship positions in Inphi Corp., Rambus Inc. and Xilinx Inc., where he worked on various projects including laser driver, mm-wave front-end and high-speed link designs. His research interest includes design and optimization of energy-efficient integrated systems as well as design automation for large mixed-signal systems.

Lingkai Kong is the recipient of the 2012-2013 SSCS Predoctoral Achievement Award, 2012 James H. Eaton Memorial Scholarship, 2011 Analog Devices Outstanding Designer Award, and co-recipient of the best student paper award in 2011 symposium on VLSI circuits.