M.Tech In Electronic Systems Design

M.Tech. in Electronic Systems Design (ESD) is a new programme launched by IIITB in 2014. It is awarded upon successful completion of a 4-semester broad-based academic programme, with specialization either in System-on-Chip (SoC) or Embedded Systems. With the onset of a new wave of revolution being unleashed by the Internet of Things (IoT) due to the availability of extremely low cost and low power hardware platforms in the form of SoCs and Embedded System boards, we are seeing the emergence of a new convergence between hardware and software. Its potential is limited only by human imagination and its impact is being seen in the rapid evolution it is fostering in different domains such as automation, e-health, mobile communication, smart home, automotive sector, consumer electronics, pervasive computing, computer architecture, etc. The new M. Tech. (ESD) program is being launched to meet the above vision and objectives.

Introduction

IIIT-B started a new M.Tech. program in 2014 offering degree in Electronic Systems Design (ESD). The genesis of this program is to help address the growth of the highly skilled manpower in Chip Design and Embedded System Design needed to support electronics system design and manufacturing (ESDM) in our country, in alignment with the national and state  policies to foster growth and entrepreneurship in ESDM as outlined by the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DIETY) of the Government of India, and the Government of Karnataka, respectively.

One emerging area where such skilled manpower will be needed in large numbers is in the domain of Internet of Things (IoTs) which is fostering a rapid revolution in different domains such as  industrial automation, e-health, mobile communication, smart homes, automotives, space, aviation, railways, agriculture, logistics, consumer electronics, pervasive computing, computer architecture and ambient intelligence.

The M. Tech. program in ESD is envisaged to meet the above objectives.

Specializations

The 2-year degree program allows students to specialize in two possible areas: 

  1. Embedded System Design : This specialization focuses on imparting general principles of designing platform agnostic embedded systems. This includes hardware design, software design, hardware-software co-design and co-synthesis of embedded systems, model based design and synthesis approaches to realizing embedded systems using COTS devices, FPGAs, ASICs and SOCs targeting applications in the diverse areas listed above. Students specializing in this area can draw upon elective courses spanning different areas such as, peripheral devices, device drivers, interfacing, real-time operating systems, digital, image and video signal processing, computer networks, communication networks,  robotics, automotives, software validation and testing,  etc.
     
  2. System on Chip (SoC) Design: This specialization focuses on realizing complex embedded systems on a single silicon chip which integrate not only the core digital functionality, but also the analog mixed signal functionalities – an approach warranted when the end applications need embedded systems in millions, such as, smart-phones and point of care diagnostic devices to cite a few. Design approaches to realizing SoCs, while based on the traditional linear and sequential VLSI design flow, differs from it substantially - with 70-80% legacy IPs (soft, hardened, in-house, third party IPs) being integrated with 30-20% new IPs to realize them. For SoCs, front-end RTL design, gate level netlist design, backend physical design, I/O design, test and DFT integration, verification, middleware, firmware and application software development happen, more or less, concurrently to reduce design turnaround time.  This difference in design flow is emphasized and highlighted in several elective courses. Core and elective courses impart general principles of designing complex digital and analog VLSI circuits and systems. Physics of semiconductor devices, VLSI sub-system design, high-level synthesis, functional verification, formal verification, hardware emulation, testing and design for testability, circuit simulation, deep submicron design, low power design, design optimization, are some of the electives offered in this specialization.

    Apart from imparting technical knowledge, the program teaches managerial and other cognate skills that are essential for a successful career in today's electronics industry. All students enrolled in the M.Tech program are residential, full-time students.

Course Structure

The M.Tech. program is a four semester program. The first three semesters of the program constitute academic course work. During the fourth semester, a student can either take up an industry internship, or pursue academic research in the institute leading to a M. Tech. thesis.

The M.Tech. program also includes a unique 3-week period at the beginning of the program called a “Preparatory Semester.” The preparatory semester in intended to bring all the incoming students up to a uniform background that is considered essential to embark on an M. Tech. degree in electronic system design. This semester covers an introductory programming module and a lab module on electronics hardware.

After the 3-week preparatory term, the first semester of the M.Tech. program consists of foundational courses in ESD that include the fundamentals of digital VLSI design, analog VLSI design, essential discrete mathematics, operating systems, embedded systems and data structures & algorithms.

The second and third semesters build on the foundation with elective courses. The student now may specialize in either SOC Design or Embedded Systems. Across the second and third semesters, the students take at least five elective courses in their area of specialization and an additional three open elective courses (some of which may include research and other individual or group projects supervised by a faculty member). The final semester is designated for industry internship, or a research thesis.

Placements

The first batch of M.Tech. (ESD) students will graduate in June, 2016. 100% of these students have already obtained industrial internships for their fourth semester through the IIIT-B Placement Cell. By March, 2016, they will all have been placed in full-time jobs, with highly competitive starting salary packages.

Faculty members with a brief about their interests

Dr. Chetan Parikh and Dr. Subhajit Sen

Analog and mixed-signal circuit and system design, with special emphases in energy harvesting and power management for IoT devices, embedded-systems for biomedical applications, and organic thin-film transistor circuits on flexible substrates.
 

Dr. Subir Roy

Formal Verification (Hardware & Hybrid System – Analog Mixed Signal), Power Estimation, Performance Analysis, CAD for VLSI and Embedded Systems.
 

Dr. Srinath Naidu

Electronic design automation including statistical timing analysis and optimisation for digital circuits, power analysis and optimization and formal verification.
 

Dr. Madhav Rao

Medical electronics, 3D Interconnect engineering, and digital circuits.

Program Curriculum:

M.Tech (ESD) Curriculum