NTU Student Team Won the ISSCC
Student Design Contest for the Fifth Time
Looking back at the year 2009, 3D films like "Up" and "Avatar" swept the box offices. They not only became the secret weapon for Hollywood producers, but also led the audiences into a revolutionary age of visual images. Capitalizing on this trend, the student team led by Professor Liang-Gee Chen, self developed a high resolution 3D image processing chip (4K x 2K), which will be presented at the 2010 ISSCC.
Now entering its 46th year, the hosting agencies of the Design Automation Conference, rushed to announce the winners of the DAC/ISSCC contest before the end of 2009. The student team led by Professor Liang-Gee Chen of the Institute of Electronics Engineering won the top laurels again. This marks the fifth time in seven years that a student team led by Professor Liang-Gee Chen won the top prize in the DAC/ISSCC contest, an amazing feat which not only stunned all the participants, but also set a record for the DAC/ISSCC contest. The DAC/ISSCC student design contest was co-organized by the Design Automation Conference and the International Solid State Circuits Conference and is regarded as the most important design contest for student chips in the world. Only chip designs which make great contributions to, or achieve major breakthroughs to the chip industry could possibly come to the fore. Therefore, this contest attracted students from the top universities and institutes to compete every year.
Take the year 2009, for instance, over 60 teams from the top universities in the World participated in the contest. In addition to the team from NTU's Institute of Electronics Engineering, teams from Stanford University, UC Berkeley, the University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign (UIUC) ended up among the 9 winning teams. The fact that NTU won the top prize proved that NTU was one of the forerunners in the world in the field of chip design, and possessed advanced technology and innovative thinking.
The NTU student team, which comprised of eight students from the Institute of Electronics Engineering, used the design of a "4096-2160p Multiview Video Encoder Chip for 3D/Quad HDTV Applications" to come to the fore in this vigorous contest. This encoder chip, which has the three-in-one function of supporting 3 dimensional images, offering scalable video streaming and presenting ultra-high resolution images can simultaneously process images for 3D television and images of ultra-high resolution (4K x 2K), will lead the world into an age of 3D television and ultra-high screen resolution. In the foreseeable future, watching the 3D film "Avatar" at home will no longer be just a dream!!
The processing capability of this integrated chip far exceeds those of the video image encoders now available on the market. In addition, it is low cost, uses low memory bandwidth and very low power consumption. Through the "Multi-view Video Coding" technology, it allows the users to watch 3D films on their cellphones. If coupled with a 3D camera, people can actually communicate with one another via 3D visual images. And, through the decoding functions of "scalable video coding," this chip can provide many more very attractive applications of video streaming, and effectively solve the problem of encountering a fixed frame or blackness which is commonly seen in webcasting. This multi-functional chip, if used to integrate the image acquisition, communication and display technologies of the existing chip platforms, can become the core technology for the next generation high resolution televisions and 3 dimensional images, and create many competitive products for Taiwan. In essence, it helps the image processing industry of Taiwan to enter an era of ultra-high resolution, effectively promotes the design power of 3D imaging ancillary products, and creates limitless business opportunities for the image processing industry of Taiwan.