IEEE - CAS Bangalore Chapter, India     CAS Chapter - Region 10
Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers - Circuits and Systems Society
Goals: To conduct seminars, workshops, and other events pertaining to all aspects of electronic circuits and systems
Event Reports - 2017
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October
A Primer entitled Machine Learning and Artificial Neural Networks
24 October 2017
Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus
Report by C.P.Ravikumar ... Photos

neural-oct17 A Primer entitled Machine Learning and Artificial Neural Networks was organized by PragaTI (TI India Technical University) in association with IEEE-CAS Society, Bangalore Chapter on 24 October 2017 at Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus with an intention of introducing the subject. Osheen Nayak (Texas Instruments) was the invited speaker.

The talk began with an introduction to machine learning which the speaker categorized as supervised learning & unsupervised learning, and the key terminologies. He elaborated on Linear Regression with single and multiple variables and gradient descent algorithm and regularization.

Logistic Regression techniques was the other part with an introduction to various algorithms such as decision trees, k-Nearest Neighbors and support Vector Machines.

The speaker showed how to apply machine learning in python, the representation of artificial neural networks and back propagation algorithm.

We had around 20 participants including some IEEE members. The event was also covered over the Internet, and many who couldn't attend in person participated through the TI webex portal, with 15 from Singapore and 15 from India.

September
A Seminar entitled Challenges in Developing Semiconductors for Power Products
7 September 2017
Seminar Hall, DESE, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
Report by C.P.Ravikumar ... Photos

semicon-sep17 A Seminar entitled Challenges in Developing Semiconductors for Power Products was jointly Organized by IEEE Power Electronics Society and IEEE CAS Bangalore Chapter on 7 September 2017 at Seminar Hall, DESE, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. Ebenezer Vidyasagar, the Director of APP (Analog Power Products) Engineering Team at Texas Instruments was the invited speaker.

The seminar highlighted the challenging task of providing electrical power to modern-day electronic systems due to the complexity of these systems. As the number of transistors in these systems have been steadily increasing, resulting in an increased need for power, the problem calls for necessitating power management. The speaker pointed out about the various systems integrating diverse IP from multiple vendors, including digital, analog and mixed-signal IP, which in turn require different levels of power. Increasingly, many of these electronic systems operate on battery power and harvested energy, which makes it important to consider the footprint of the solution and thermal dissipation when powering modern gadgets.

The speaker listed out the complete power solutions with a full line of high-performance products that Texas Instruments offers, ranging from standard linear regulators to highly efficient DC/DC converters and battery management ICs. The talk also focused on several technology challenges that we face as we move from discrete power solutions to fully integrated monolithic power solutions.

The seminar was intended for postgraduate students of Electrical/Electronics engineering, and was also open to interested members of IEEE. We had around 70 participants that comprised students, faculty and the industry-based, with some IEEE members. Snacks were served after the seminar.

I N D E X   T O P August
A Seminar on Analog Design and Test - Challenges and Opportunities
30 August 2017
IIIT Bangalore, 26/C, Electronics City, Hosur Road, Bangalore 560100
Report by C.P.Ravikumar

A Seminar entitled Analog Design and Test - Challenges and Opportunities was organized by IIIT (Indian Institute of Information Technology) Bangalore in association with IEEE-CAS Society, Bangalore Chapter on 30 August 2017 at the IIIT Bangalore Campus on Hosur Road. Dr.C.P.Ravikumar, Director of Technical Talent Development at Texas Instruments India was the invited speaker.

The seminar was hosted by Dr Chetan Parikh of IIIT Bangalore. Over 50 participants, including M.Tech students and faculty members of IIIT Bangalore attended the event. There was good interaction between the students and the speaker after the seminar and the students raised a number of technical questions. Dr Subhajit Sen proposed the vote of thanks.

I N D E X   T O P July
A Two-day Conference entitled Electronics Makers 2017
July 1-2, 2017
Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus
Report by C.P.Ravikumar ... Photos

em2017 A Two-day Conference entitled Electronics Makers 2017 was jointly organized by IEEE India Council, Centre for Embedded Product Design, Centre for Electronics Design & Technolgy, NSIT, in Association with IEEE-CAS, Bangalore Chapter on July 1-2, 2017 at NSIT, New Delhi.

The conference was inaugurated by Prof. Ramgopal Rao, Director of IIT Delhi by lighting the electronic lamp which is a DIY project from TI-CEPD. Dr.C.P.Ravikumar welcomed the participants on behalf of IEEE and TI Center for Embedded Product Design (NSIT). The keynote talk by Dr. Ramgopal Rao was on the topic Bridging Academic R&D with Product Innovation - a few case studies and a way forward… His talk focused on nanotechnology and the efforts by his research team to create products in the area of nanotechnology. He spoke about the applications of nanotechnology that he has chosen to work on, and in particular, he felt that MEMS sensors are emerging as a major technology. His research team has developed sensors for applications such as electronic sniffing applications in security where sniffing out explosives such as TNT and RDX can help eliminate terrorism. He pointed out that "Dogs could be trained to sniff out explosives, but this solution may not work in crowded trains; also, dogs may fail to function in an alien territory". His students have used several techniques to detect explosives. One approach is to find nanomaterials whose molecules are exactly as big as the intermolecular space in the explosive material. Another is to heat a sample of the suspected material to rapidly increase its temperature, thereby testing if it indeed explodes. Several products were designed and tested by Prof. Rao's team. Some students have even established a company to make the products available on a commercial basis.

The second speaker was Dr. Prabhat Ranjan, executive director of TIFAC-CORE (DST). His research team has developed custom wearables for persons with disabilities or persons who are victims of accidents, which help them to carry out simple functions like changing channels on a TV remote. He related the story of a girl who lost her hands and a leg in an electrocution accident. When he wanted to develop an electronic solution to help her in some way, he asked her about one thing she wanted to do but cannot. Initially, she brushed off the question and told him she is satisfied the way she is. But later, she told him she would have liked to go out on a wheelchair. He focused on her abilities - her ability to speak and the fact that he still has one limb to develop a solution. With the help of a wheel chair manufacturer, his team developed a voice-operated chair that she could operate with her one leg. He quoted numerous examples of such custom DIY projects. Once again, the message from his talk was to look around within our own small worlds to find problems worth solving.

Two panel discussions followed. A majority of the 100-odd audience consisted of undergraduate and postgraduate students of Electronics and Communication, many of who are DIYers and harbor desires to make startup companies some day. "From DIY to Make In India - A Leap of Faith" was the topic of the first panel, which was moderated by Dr.C.P.Ravikumar , and participated by a number of young DIY-ers. The panelists consisted of Prof. Dhananjay Gadre, Ajit Singh, Anup Rajput, Sanjay Dixit and Nidhi Sharma who gave some valuable input and advice from their own experience as DIY-ers.

Ajit Singh presently has a successful manufacturing unit that makes power banks. Anup Rajput worked in the semiconductor industry for a few years before returning to the world of electronics DIY, product design and manufacturing. Sanjay Dixit works at TI where he develops applications, but is also a hobby DIY-er. Nidhi Sharma started out at a semiconductor company, but soon decided to pursue an independent path.

Ajit Singh offered a number of tips on DIY projects from conception to final output. He raised the question of the required ecosystem for its implementation, and whether the educational institutions or the Government or the industry or the job of the DIY-ers themselves should nurture. His other tip was on arriving at the economics of the project where the final cost should not just add up the components but also include design, manufacture, package, and testing of the product! Selecting the components he opined to be a crucial first step specially for low-cost products to be profitable. He felt that the eco-system is not conducive to "Make In India." considering the turn-around-time for a PCB design/manufacture being about 3 days in China, while it turns out to be 10 days in India despite the labor component being cheaper at home. He cited example from China which has built an excellent infrastructure for manufacturing and is ahead of India, because of "No intervention from the Government, and by implementing generous policies that include tax holidays for the initial years" which has helped in creating this infrastructure". He suggested the DIYers to continuously innovate and improve the product to make it cheaper, better and reliable even after the launch, setting aside about 10% of the revenue towards R&D, and most importantly testing the product before the product leaves and reaches the customer.

A startup company may not be able to afford many of the test equipment such as network analyzers and spectrum analyzers needed for product development. Making such costly equipment available through centers of excellence will boost "Make in India. Prof. Gadre added that many centers that have been created to help electronics startups provide office space and other logistics, but the startups really need support through equipment, and explained his own long battle to set up a high-quality lab in his college.

Anup Rajput explained another problem with faulty and spurious components in the market, which quite often turn out to be as high as 10% of what is purchased. The main reason as he observed was the Indian suppliers of components not taking ownership of what they sell, resorting to importing cheap components from China which are often fake. He recounted his own journey in the DIY space.

Nidhi Sharma recounted her story and offered inspiration to students who want to turn their DIY projects into products. She also offered them a number of tips. She has recorded a video of her talk and it is available here.

Sanjay Dixit recounted his own experience as a DIYer, starting from college days when he had very little exposure to DIY and later got into DIY through curiosity. He pointed out on the difficulty in accessing electronic components and tools in the earlier says, which doesn't affect the students presently who are luckier. Companies have excellent sampling program he said, and a good lab can be built at home by spending about Rs 25K by buying a cheaper cell phone and use the money to start a lab. On the the question of what a home-lab should include, he suggested a multimeter, an oscilloscope, a signal generator, and, of course, the components. He urged the students to get into the DIY space and experience the thrill of making projects work. He advised the students to become aware of the vast space of analog ICs as well, and not just the microcontrollers.

There was a good Q&A during the panel discussion. The second panel titled Project based Engineering Education for “Make in India” was on education with A. Paventhan of ERNET, Bangalore among the panelists.

On July 1, a hands-on workshop was conducted by Texas Instruments, India entitled Microcontroller Learning Platform on a Shoestring Budget using MSP430 LunchBox. On July 2, the second day, we had another hands-on workshop on Beaglebone and Linux - Open-Source Hardware and Software for DIY by Texas Instruments, India, and a workshop on VXWorks conducted by CG CorEl, New Delhi.

There were DIY project presentations with demos by the fifteen submitted works. Certificates and prizes for the best three projects were awarded during the valedictory.

A more detailed and personal account of the event is available through My notes from Electronics Maker 2017: Part-1 and Part-2.

I N D E X   T O P May
A One-day conference entitled INNOVATION & DO-IT-YOURSELF ELECTRONICS
27 May 2017
Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus
Report by C.P.Ravikumar ... Photos

idiye2017 A One-day conference entitled INNOVATION & DO-IT-YOURSELF ELECTRONICS (IDIYE-2017) was organized in cooperation with IEEE CAS Bangalore Chapter and IEEE Bangalore Section, with support from Texas Instruments India on 27 May 2017 at Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus. Innovation and DIY were the two themes of IDIYE-2017, and the conference tried providing a forum for "Do It Yourself" enthusiasts from industries and academy to present their ideas, and demonstrate them in action.
The inauguration of IDIYE-2017 used the DIY lamp designed by Prof. Dhananjay Gadre, that is smoke and fire-free. Five young participating DIYers were invited to light this lamp.

Dr. Prabhat Ranjan, Executive Director of TIFAC-CORE, Department of Science and Technology, delivered the keynote address about the DIY solutions which he and his students designed to help a number of patients with disability. He spoke of a number of different technologies that he has adopted in his work, including Brain-Computer Interface, to help the patients that was inspirational to the DIYers.

Twenty DIY projects were presented at the conference. These projects were on diverse topics, such as healthcare, education, agriculture and smart cities. The DIYers employed various technologies such as state-of-the-art microcontrollers, sensors and wireless communication. In particular, "Internet of Things" was a recurring theme in many projects. There was a good mix of projects from academia and industry.

A panel discussion moderated by C.P. Ravikumar on the topic of "DIY Electronics" was held in the pre-lunch session. The panelists included Vivek Saxena of BLR Labs and Dr Sujatha Jagannath of Wipro. The panelists focused on the importance of project-based education and industry-academia relations to make DIY a part of our engineering education.

 

The projects that were presented were also demonstrated in a post-lunch session. The demos provided an opportunity for the DIYers to learn from one another. There was also a special booth of IEEE, where information was provided to visitors about the benefits of IEEE membership. There was also a Selfie Booth where participants could click fun pictures for their memory.

In a valedictory function, Dr Sarat Chandra Babu, Director of CDAC Bangalore, spoke about the importance of DIY. CDAC Bangalore has introduced an IoT Learning Kit which can be useful to engineering faculty in teaching the topic of IoT through projects. Dr. Sarat distributed the certificates to the authors, and handed over the prizes to the following projects that were awarded prizes:

Non-Invasive Blood Sugar Prediction using DLP® NIRScan™
by Nano Arti Malgaonkar, Keerthibala Viswanatha, Priyankar Mathuria and Ankur Patel (Texas Instruments India)
acTIve_badge
by Kalyan Chakravarthy Chekuri, Savinaya Venkappa and Hanumanth Rao Sawanth (Texas Instruments India)
Agri-Cover
by Lenson Merwin Fernandes and P.Apoorva Naik (Canara Engineering College)
Landmark Based Modification to Correct Distortions related to consonants in Dysarthric Speech using DSK6713
by Ananya Raj N, Anees Anjum M S, Chethan S R and Lakshmi H N (SIT, Tumakuru)

We had around 80 participants including some IEEE members, and the event attracted positive feedback with a suggestion to conduct it yearly. C.P. Ravikumar, general chair of the conference thanked the sponsors, presenting authors, delegates, and the invited speakers for making the event possible.
You will find the final program of the conference here. The conference proceedings are also made available on IEEE CAS Bangalore website. The event photographs covering various stages are displayed here.

I N D E X   T O P April
A Seminar entitled CMOS Manufacturing in India - Issues and Challenges
25 April, 2017
Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus
Report by C.P.Ravikumar ... Photos

cmos-apr17 A Seminar entitled CMOS Manufacturing in India - Issues and Challenges was organized by PragaTI (TI India Technical University) In cooperation with IEEE CAS Society, Bangalore Chapter on 25 April, 2017 at Texas Instruments India, Bagmane Techpark, CV Raman Nagar, Bangalore 93. HS Jatana (Dept of Space, Govt of India) was the invited speaker.

The talk focused on CMOS manufacturing activities in India, and gave brief details of Infrastructure and capability pertaining to CMOS manufacturing (design, process, etc), activities and research work carried out, academic interaction at SCL. Issues in managing fab operations, utilities required, fab ecosystem were also highlighted.
To aid the participants from academia, SCL-Academia scope of work were also discussed, highlighting how the academia can benefit from SCL.

The speaker HS Jatana is serving as a Sci/Engr 'SG', Group Head – Design & Process Grp, SCL at the Dept of Space, Govt of India. We had around 25 participants from TI, CDAC and a few educational institutions including some IEEE members. There was a good interaction during and after the talk, and the talk was well appreciated.

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A Seminar entitled From Power Management to Energetic Intelligence: An evolutionary challenge for students, educators and designers
April 10, 2017
Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus
Report by C.P.Ravikumar ... Photos

pwrmgmt-apr17 A Seminar entitled From Power Management to Energetic Intelligence: An evolutionary challenge for students, educators and designers was organized by IEEE CAS Bangalore Chapter in cooperation with PragaTI (TI India Technical University) on April 10, 2017 at Texas Instruments India, Bagmane Techpark, CV Raman Nagar, Bangalore. Nicola Femia who is a Full Professor at the University of Salerno, Italy, where he teaches Power Electronics and Energetic Intelligence was the invited speaker.

As Power Management Circuits and Systems provide electrical energy to all the objects making our life more comfortable, safer and funnier, like smart phones and watches, aircraft and automobiles, implanted prostheses and magnetic resonance machines, blenders and microwave ovens, robots and drones, digital TV sets and personal computers, the speaker pointed out about the design of Power Management Circuits and Systems being an exciting intellectual dare for students and educators, as it stimulates insight of interdisciplinary knowledge, understanding of new technologies, exploration of unconventional design solutions, discovery of the power of mathematics, reinforcement of problem solving capability, intelligent use of the energy and ultimately preservation of the environment and of the Earth's resources.

Power Management Circuits and Systems today implement much more enhanced energy processing functions than in the past, bridging power designers into the era of Energetic Intelligence. University education and industry training has to coherently enhance, to proactively drive this evolution and to guide talented students and designers towards the achievement of powerful professional skills. The seminar intended to overview power management design issues and to propose a vision of the knowledge and tools needed to win the challenges of Energetic Intelligence.

We had a full house including some IEEE members, with a lively Q&A session.

I N D E X   T O P March
A One-day course entitled Analog System Design
March 18, 2017
Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus
Report by C.P.Ravikumar ... Photos

analog-mar17 A One-day course entitled Analog System Design was organized by IEEE-CAS Society, Bangalore Chapter in cooperation with Texas Instruments India on March 18, 2017 at Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus, Bangalore 560093.

Dr. K.Radhakrishna Rao (TI India) was the invited instructor and Sagar Juneja who is currently a Research Associate at Chitkara University Research & Innovation Network (CURIN) served as the co-faculty. Since Analog design has become a key part of modern SoC, even embedded microcontrollers include some analog IP such as operational amplifiers, ADC, DAC, power regulators, oscillators, etc. The participants had a hands-on introduction to analog system design with hands-on exercises.

This hands-on course was intended for teachers and student members of IEEE only, and attracted 34 participants from various enginering colleges, and certificates were issued at the end of the day.

I N D E X   T O P February
A Two-day Workshop entitled Science Editathon
4-5 February, 2017
Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus
Report by C.P.Ravikumar ... Photos

science-wiki-feb17 A Two-day Workshop entitled Science Editathon was Organized by IEEE-CAS Bangalore Chapter, In cooperation with Wikipedia Foundation and Texas Instruments, India on 4-5 February, 2017 at Texas Instruments India, Bagmane Tech Park, CV Raman Nagar, Bangalore 560093. This was the second such event, and the first one titled Wikipedia Editathon (Topic - Science and Technology) was held during December 2015.

Wikipedia being a great source of information in the 21st century, the intention of the workshop was to educate the participants on how to write and edit Wikipedia articles on science-related topics.

On Day-1, the participants without a Wikipedia account created one for themselves and were given an overview of how to add articles, and also edit articles put up by others. Best practices of writing and editing were be shared. In particular, the goal of the workshop was to add articles in Indian languages such as Kannada.

The workshop was open to IEEE members. We had 5 participants who participated in person and three who joined us remotely. Renowned writers Nagesh Hegde and U.B. Pavanaja were among the attendees. 13 science articles were added to Wikipedia, and during February, more articles will be added.

I N D E X   T O P January
A Seminar entitled Authentication and Functional Obfuscation of Integrated Circuits
13 January, 2017
Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus
Report by C.P.Ravikumar ... Photos

Authentication and Functional Obfuscation of Integrated Circuits A Seminar entitled Authentication and Functional Obfuscation of Integrated Circuits was Organized by PragaTI (TI India Technical University) In cooperation with IEEE CAS Society, Bangalore Chapter on 13 January, 2017 at Texas Instruments India, Bangalore Campus. Prof. Keshab K. Parhi from the Dept of ECE, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis was the invited speaker.

The talk focused on the important aspect of hardware security, and the speaker discussed the recent results that his team has unearthed in this area in two parts. The first part covered "Physical unclonable functions" (PUFs), the small circuits that can exploit manufacturing process variations to generate unique signatures of chips in the form of challenge-response pairs that can be stored in a server and can be used to authenticate devices. Various delay-based PUFs including "Multiplexer (MUX) PUF" and "Ring-oscillator PUF" were discussed with examples of "Memory PUFs" including SRAM PUF and DRAM PUF. The speaker then talked about modeling both linear and nonlinear MUX PUFs, and showed that both the hard and soft responses of linear and nonlinear MUX PUFs can be modeled by artificial neural network.

The second part of the talk was about functional obfuscation where the functionality is hidden by incorporating keys to a design such that the circuit only functions correctly if the key is correct. It was highlighted that various modes are introduced where by only the correct key triggers the correct functionality of the chip. He also mentioned the goal to prevent foundries from manufacturing excess parts and selling in black market. The second goal being able to prevent theft of intellectual property, with the third goal of obfuscation to prevent reverse engineering.

The speaker then introduced the notions of fixed and dynamic obfuscation, and showed that the time to find the key by trial and error can be increased exponentially with dynamic obfuscation.

We had a full house including some IEEE members.

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