I am glad I went to this year’s SISPAD 2009. There were many fascinating papers and I had the opportunity to meet with several researchers doing some interesting work.

There were many papers using Non-Equilibrium Green’s Functions~(NEGF). I’ve always had difficulty in understanding the approach, but Dipanjan Basu from the University of Texas at Austin gave me one of the best explanations.

NEGF, Monte Carlo (MC), and Spherical Harmonic Expansions of the Bolztmann Equations (SHE) seemed to be popular simulation methods for nano-devices. The molecular dynamics simulations of Dr. K.-R. Lee of KIST were quite impressive showing the interactions of Al and Co atoms.

I am glad to see device simulation using continuum PDE simulation is still considered important. There is also an exciting application of this method and MC to bio-sensor applications.

Dr. Ancona gave an interesting talk using Density Gradient theory to model Sb-based PFET’s. He used the COMSOL multiphysics package to do his simulations. This piqued my interest as I am writing a generalized PDE solver of my own. Being a finite element package (FE), it was surprising he was able to overcome the issues with current density calculations without using Scharfetter Gummel (SG).

Aryan Afzalian also had an interesting paper where he used COMSOL as part of his NEGF simulation method.

One of the most entertaining speakers was Professor Wachutka from TU Munich. He had a fascinating discussion of the importance power devices, and the interesting effects which need to be modeled using TCAD.

In addition to Synopsys, TCAD International and Global TCAD Solutions were TCAD companies sponsoring the event. It is good to see that there is room in the TCAD simulation market.

I was also appreciative that Clemens Heitzinger (University of Vienna) and Yang Liu (Stanford) were there to discuss bio-sensors. Greg Rollins (Synopsys) and Valery Axelrad (SEQUOIA Design Systems) were also kind enough to share their insight into TCAD device simulation issues.

Many thanks to the SISPAD organizers for an excellent conference.