Electronic Design Automation Centre
City University of Hong Kong
Department of Electronic Engineering
Tat Chee Ave. 
Kowloon, Hong Kong

PHYSICAL LOCATION

P1406, Electronic Engineering Laboratories, Academic Block Purple Zone


Director: Mr. Anthony Shi-Sheung Fong
Deputy Director: Dr. Angus Kwok-Ming Wu
Academic Staffs:
Computer Officer: Mr. Calvin Wu
Senior Technician: Mr. C. Y. Cheng
Technician: Mr. W. K. Kan

CONTENTS
 
History
Centre Facilities
Industrial Services
Centre Objective
Research Activities
Support
Post Opening


BRIEF HISTORY

Since microelectronic technology is becoming increasingly complex and sophisticated, it is becoming more and more difficult for human beings to carry out electronic circuit designs manually. The solution is CAD. In other words, we have to rely on EDA tools running on high performance computers to complete circuit designs on time. To provide education and facilitate research activities in the area, the EDA centre was established in 1994 at City University of Hong Kong.

This Centre is equipped with state-of-the-art EDA tools and high performance worktstations. Collectively they cover the entire spectrum of interest, from design entry and low-level device and circuit designs, to high-level system designs. The Centre has been endowed with many VHDL packages for simulation, verification, testing, automatic test vector generation, circuit synthesis, and high-level physical design for various circuit technologies. There also exists field programmable gate array (FPGA) tools for the production of physical chips.

It is noteworthy that major EDA licenses and workstations in the centre have been obtained through donations from industry. Both of the Synopsys and Cascade company donations were the first of their kind to be awarded by the respective companies in the entire South-East Asia region.
 
 
Year Company Donation HK$ Equipment
1996 Xilinx, USA 1.7 Millions EDA tools
1996 Cascade Design Automation, USA 85 Millions EDA tools
1995 SUN Microsystems, USA 1 Million SUN SPARC servers
1993 Synopsys, USA 65 Millions EDA tools
1993 SUN Microsystems, USA 1 Million SUN SPARC workstations
. Total 153.7 Millions .



CENTRE FACILITIES
 

The EDA centre is an instructional laboratory designed for teaching concepts in digital system and microelectronics circuit design with EDA tools, and a research centre for EDA related research. The centre is equipped with more than HK$ 150 millions worth hardwares and softwares. It is one of the most well equipped teaching and research centre among the eduction institutes in Hong Kong. Currently, the centre consists of 20 SUN Sparc workstations and 25 pentium based personal computers. They are served by the SUN 2000E and 1000E servers. More information can be found on the centre resources page. The computational equipments and softwares are acquired through donations from the industries including Synopsys, Cascade Design Automation, and SUN Microsystems. We are grateful to all of these donations for their generous support.



CENTRE OBJECTIVES
 

The activities of this centre can be summarized into three groups:
1. To provide EDA tools for digital system designs, from behavioural modelling and high-level design (mainly with VHDL), to low-level and physical microelectronics design and implementation, including ASIC and FPGA.
2. To support general teaching and final-year-student projects on EDA systems.
3. To support the research projects of academic staff and research students.

 Support Courses:
Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) in Electronic Engineering
Information Engineering
Master of Science in Electronic Engineering
Support Research: Digital System Design 
Computer-Aided Design
VLSI Design
Neural Network



RESEARCH ACTIVITIES
 

Research in the Centre can be divided into two groups: VLSI Design and Intelligent Systems Members of the Centre are undertaking six active projects worth over HK$1 million.

RESEARCH PROJECTS

  • Unified Optimal Statistical Design Framework for Design and Yield Optimization (Research Grants Council, Hong Kong Government, Competitive Earmarked Research Grant)

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  • HISC: A High-level Instruction Set Computer

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  • Stochastic Circuit Modeling for Design-for-Manufacturability (CityU Strategic Research Grant)

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  • Time Differential Pulse Coded Reinforcement Learning and Hardware Implementation (City University Strategic Research Grant)

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  • High-throughput Memory for Sequential Data Access (City University Strategic Research Grant)

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  • A Hybrid Implementation of Artificial Neural Networks (City University Strategic Research Grant)

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    SUPPORT

    The EDA centre has been the beneficiary of many supports. The EDA centre is supported in part by:



    INDUSTRIAL SERVICES

    In 1996, the Centre was awarded a grant of $3.21 millions by the Hong Kong Industry Department under the Industrial Support Fund to establish an electronic design automation centre to service the local industry.

    The project is to establish a centre for electronic circuit design services. The Centre will provide the following technology transfer and consultancy services to the Hong Kong electronic product industry:
     

    The Centre will be equipped with industry-grade facilities to provide rapid electronic circuit design, simulation, synthesis, testing tools and test programs, ASIC/FPGA design and layout tools, design libraries, prototyping, and pilot production testing.

    This is an efficient and cost effective way to enhance the technological know-how for the local electronic industry and to increase its competitiveness. The industry includes consumer electronics, toys, TV games, electronic dictionaries, organisers, watches, computers and peripherals, telecommunications peripherals, OEM's and ODM's. The Centre is targeted to be financially self-sufficient in three years with the funds generated from the technology transfer programs and consultancy services.