Call for Proposals in Cross-disciplinary Semiconductor Research (CSR)

The goal of this initiative is to foster exploratory, multi-disciplinary, high-risk university research leading to novel high-payoff solutions for the science and technology challenges faced by the semiconductor industry at and beyond the time horizons of the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS), Successful CSR projects will offer innovative and, hopefully, disruptive solutions to the challenge of continuing exponential gains in cost/performance benefits to the semiconductor industry for the foreseeable future, may lead to novel applications for this industry and may enhance the population of non-traditional researchers/out of box thinkers working with the Semiconductor Research Corporation and Focus Center Research Programs.

Specific areas of interest include (not in priority order):

  • Novel device, logic, memory, interconnect-architecture and 3-D concepts that sustain or exceed the ITRS cadence in device density and speed while controlling thermal dissipation.
  • High performance circuit/system architectures that enable manufacturing of CMOS in the nano domain and exploit the emerging nanoscale technologies; e.g., design for statistical variability, design for novel patterning and device concepts, etc.
  • Design methodology, synthesis, characterization and computation of novel functional/nano materials for the semiconductor technology; e.g., phase transition materials, electro-optic materials, nano-ferroelectrics, magnetic semiconductors, spintronics, organic electronics, etc. Novel approaches to nano-engineered materials including a knowledgebase for terascale complex materials, etc.
  • Radical concepts on alternate to patterning technologies for nano manufacturing; e.g., design directed patterning, novel 3-D patterning concepts that enable precise assembly and control of interface and complex graded composite and functional nano-structures, field directed patterning, additive and ordered material domains, low energy and biometric concepts such as self replication/healing/repair, adaptive and bio-hybrid structures, templating, error correction, defect tolerant, etc.
  • Radical concepts on directed/self-assembly to enable emerging material, device and system architectures for CMOS and alternative devices beyond CMOS; e.g., patterning at the nano/atomic scales, gate dielectrics, molecular level process control, synthetic processes which produce complex technological useful structures with minimum patterning information, field/Si-DNA assisted assembly of desired functional structures, etc.
  • Enabling technologies for novel interconnect/switch architectures; e.g., alternates to on-chip metal-dielectric interconnect technologies at the nanoscale beyond copper/low K, etc.
  • Novel concepts on component technologies, which can be integrated with silicon platforms for high performance systems and heterogeneous integration; e.g., organic electronics, optoelectronics, NEMs, radical approaches to circumvent IC packaging cost, etc.
  • Ideas to enhance design productivity for trillion + component systems; e.g., probabilistic design methodologies, etc.
  • Extremely low power integrated circuit systems; e.g., microwatt systems
  • Radical concepts for management and removal of heat from integrated circuits
  • Synergistic information processing technologies for emerging patterning, material, device, interconnect and system architectures leading to super performance extremely low power systems; e.g., biomimetic concepts, etc.
  • Radical departures from the integrated circuit paradigm for information processing; e.g., quantum computing technologies and spin off technologies from quantum computing research (e.g., single atom electronics), bio-inspired computing, DNA computing, etc.
  • Radical concepts for automatic generation, verification, configuration, and self-adaptation of embedded real-time software
  • Novel semiconductor applications; e.g., human/semiconductor interface, devices for energy scavenging from the environment, semiconductor and quantum technologies for security/encryption for mobile applications, ambient intelligence, machines that can conceptualize from data, holographic meetings, etc.
  • Enabling technologies for ambient intelligence and anthropomorphic machines; e.g., organic electronics, E-Textiles, bio/electronics interface, sensing systems, continuous speech semantic analysis (e.g., understanding, and situation awareness), cognitive processing, etc.

Preference will be given to projects that require multi-disciplinary approach/teams.

The role of this program is to stimulate non-traditional thinking about the issues facing the semiconductor industry. It is intended to incubate new research and programs for SRC and MARCO. Consistent with the incubator role of the initiative, these will be one (1) year non-overhead bearing gifts (grants) at a funding level of $40K. Awardees are encouraged to develop a proposal for follow-on funding of expanded programs by the SRC, MARCO or other agencies. Follow-on SRC and MARCO funding will depend on the availability of funds and strategic plan alignment.

ELIGIBILITY: University Faculty

The proposal for a CSR grant is limited to five pages in length and should describe the planned research approach and possible research outcomes for the semiconductor industry, if successful. Proposals are due at the SRC no later than close of business, September 5, 2003 and will be reviewed by the SRC Executive Technical Advisory Board in October/November 2003. Notifications of the outcome of the review process will be made by December 1, 2003.

Questions regarding the intent and scope of the CSR Program are to be addressed to:
Dr. Lalita Manchanda
Telephone: (919) 941-9400

PROPOSAL STRUCTURE (strict limit of five pages)

  1. Project name:
  2. Investigators:
  3. University:
  4. Mailing address:
  5. Telephone number and e-mail address:
  6. Problem to be addressed: Explain the rationale for the project in terms of the semiconductor industry needs.
  7. Objective: What do you plan to do?
  8. Novelty: Please discuss the role of cross-disciplinary research in providing a unique solution to the problem addressed.
  9. Approach: Strategy for addressing the problem.
  10. Research output: Please identify possible research products of a successful research program.
  11. Approximately 100 word executive summary of your proposal.


  • Electronic submission of proposals is required.
  • Please submit postscript, pdf, html or Word files.
  • Please use fonts of 10-point size or larger.
  • Send your files as e-mail attachments to
    Ms. Leslie Faiers,
    Telephone: (919) 941-9455

Submission Deadline: September 5th, 2003, 5 pm.

*CSR tasks funded in 2002:

  • Atomic-Scale Modification of Si (100): Removing Dangling Bonds and Surface States
  • CMOS Optoelectronics
  • Hexagonal Silicon and Germanium for Electronics and Optoelectronics Applications
  • Electrochemical/Electroless Self-Assembly of Quantum-Confined Structures
  • A New Computational Simulation Framework for Multi-Physics Ultradeep-Submicron and Nano Device Simulation: The Discontinuous Galerkin and Pseudospectral Methods
  • Self-Improving Configurable IC Platforms
  • Toward Integrated Neuroelectronic Systems
  • Ferromagnetic Semiconductor Building Blocks for Nanoscale Spintronics Applications
  • Delay-based Architectures for Nanoscale Structures
  • Modeling, Analysis and Self-Management of Electronic Textiles
  • Active CMOS Biochips
  • Opportunities for Tera-Scale Integration Using Carbon Nanotubes
  • Molecular Single-Electron Tunneling Transistors


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