Current Research Topics:
Digital communication systems are essential in today's globally connected world. We investigate new systems for signal processing in the baseband / PHY layer. Our research includes the whole range from communication theory and algorithms to hardware architectures and their implementation in chips. Therefore, in our department, communication engineers and hardware designers work closely together.
3D-DRAMs (WIDE I/O) are a promising approach for mobile devices like Tablet-PCs and Smartphones. In the area of servers exists a high potential as well due to the high bandwidth and energy efficiency of this new memory architecture. In our research group, we develop and evaluate novel DRAM architectures, we implement DRAM controllers and we investigate the thermal behaviour of Wide-I/O DRAM by means of virtual platforms.
Technology scaling has reached a point at which process and environmental variability are no longer negligible. We focus our research on hardware-reliability in wireless communication systems, as well as memories (SRAM, DRAM). We follow a cross-layer approach, which exploits the mutual trade-offs of system performance, hardware reliability, and implementation complexity. Wireless systems are especially suited for this approach because they have inherent algorithmic error resilience.
Energy Efficient High Performance Computing
Our research group develops and evaluates new methodologies that are helpful to design sophisticated heterogeneous platforms for high-performance computing applications. In particular we focus on accelerating application-specific arithmetic problems, so-called "kernels". For the final design, we analyze the possible acceleration factors as well as the energy saving potentials, for example when using FPGAs in financial simulations. We employ the latest development tools (High-level synthesis, Maxeler design flow, Vivado design flow) as well as the most recent hardware platforms like the Xilinx Zynq EPP.
Wireless Sensor Networks collect information from the real world and form the backbone of future services (Internet of Things, Cyber Physical Systems), which will help us in our daily private and work life. We view this topic from different perspectives in an interdisciplinary way in our research, develop solutions and evaluate their relevance in practical use.
Today's companies have to deal with complex hardware architectures such as heterogeneous multi-core systems. Therefore, new development tools and approaches such as Virtual Prototyping are needed for efficient and fast design on electronic system level. In our research, we use SystemC and gem5 based virtual platforms for a thorough design space exploration on software and hardware level.