Kenneth K. O

Texas Analog Center of Excellence and Dept. of ECE,
The University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, TX


Opening Terahertz for Everyday Applications

Abstract: Emergence of CMOS (Complementary Metal Oxide Silicon) integrated circuits (IC’s) technology as a means for realization of capable and affordable systems that operate at 300GHz and higher is making everyday applications using this portion of spectrum possible. Despite the fact that the unity maximum available gain frequency, f max of NMOS transistors has peaked at ~320GHz somewhere between 65 and 32-nm technology nodes, signal generation up to 1.3THz, coherent detection up to 1.2THz and incoherent detection up to ~10THz have been demonstrated using CMOS integrated circuits.
Furthermore, highly integrated rotational spectroscopy transceiver operating up to near 300GHz and an imaging array operating at 820GHz, high data rate 300-GHz transmitters and receivers for communication have been demonstrated in CMOS. The nonlinear devices and circuit techniques that enable the operation at frequencies beyond f max as well as the next for research will be described. Lastly, efforts to open the terahertz portion of spectrum for daily use by many, including electronic nose/smelling using rotational spectroscopy that can detect and quantify concentrations of a wide variety of gases; imaging technique that can enable operation of autonomous systems in a wide range of challenging weather conditions; high-bandwidth communication; and far infrared electronic detection that can make thermal imaging/night vision affordable will be discussed.

Kenneth O received his S.B, S.M, and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA in 1984, 1984, and 1989, respectively. From 1989 to 1994, Dr. O worked at Analog Devices Inc. developing sub-micron CMOS processes for mixed signal applications, and high speed bipolar and BiCMOS processes. He has been a professor at the University of Florida, Gainesville from 1994 to 2009. He is currently the Director of Texas Analog Center of Excellence and TI Distinguished University Chair Professor of Analog Circuits and Systems at the University of Texas at Dallas. His research group is developing circuits and components required to implement analog and digital systems operating at frequencies up to 40THz using silicon IC technologies. Dr. O is the President of the IEEE Solid-State Circuits Society. He has authored and co-authored ~270 journal and conference publications, as well as holding 13 patents. Dr. O has received the 2014 Semiconductor Research Association University Researcher Award. Prof. O is also an IEEE Fellow.

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