Keynote: The Industrial Deployment of Silocon Photonics Technology

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Maurizio Zuffada (STMicroelectronics)


Data communications based on metallic interconnections in short cables, back-planes, boards and even inside integrated circuits are approaching their physical limits in term of bandwidth, attenuation, electrical crosstalk and energy consumption. Due to those limits the intensive computing applications like in high performance computing and in modern data centers are facing big challenges in power consumed for I/O data transfer and consequently for system cooling.

Photonics, up to date used for mainly long distances, is today a good candidate to get high bandwidth at low energy consumption even at very short distances. The integration of optics in close proximity with electronics gives rise to the Silicon Photonics technology. The maturity level reached by the Silicon Photonics technology allows to draw a possible industrial road map fitting the needs and the challenges of the future ICT systems and services. Although the Silicon Photonics keeps the promise to provide high bandwidth at low energy with the miniaturization level required for intra-chip communication, the cost scaling is a fundamental challenge to trigger the pervasiveness of this technology in the future mass market applications.

This presentation will describe the Silicon Photonics technology road map as well as some innovative solutions which could enable the today niche market to grow to interesting volumes typical of the traditional semiconductor market.


Curriculum Vitae

Maurizio ZuffadaMaurizio Zuffada received the Laurea Degree in Electrical Engineering from Università di Pavia in 1980. He joined SGS-ATES Semiconductors in 1981 as analog design engineer. Since 1985 he has been managing a team of analog designers aimed at industrializing analog mixed signal integrated circuits for the consumer market applications. In 1990 he joined the Data Storage Division where he was appointed as the R&D Director in 1994. In 1996 he took the responsibility of the whole R&D of the peripheral products. In 2003 with the foundation of the Computer Peripheral Group he was appointed R&D Group Director. In 2005 he moved to Advanced R&D with particular emphasis on strategic IPs. In 2005 he joined the Medea Plus European R&D organization as representative for ST Microelectronics Italy.

Since 2006 he is the president of the Scientific Steering Committee of the Studio di Microelettronica which is an R&D ST Lab joint with and housed inside the University of Pavia. Currently he is involved in strategic researches and R&D programs for high speed low energy communications. He holds 27 US patents.