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ECE Colloquium Series – Professor Sigurd Wagner

October 25 @ 3:45 pm - 5:15 pm

As part of the *Eleanore Hale Wilson Lecture Series, ECE is proud to present:

Large-area Sensor Systems Demonstrations with Hybrid Thin-film and CMOS Circuits

Professor Sigurd Wagner
Princeton University
Host: Professor Michael McAlpine



We have been exploring large-area sensor systems that combine arrays of sensor circuits, made in thin-film technology, with CMOS ICs [1,2]. Both, the thin-film as well as the CMOS domain, make use of active electronics. We foresee that such systems will become unobtrusive components of the built environment, to augment human sensing. We have demonstrated systems for sensing mechanical strain [3], gestures [4], images [5], sound [6], electrophysiology (EEG) [7], and force [8].

Our goals are (i) to understand the optimal distribution of functions between the large-area thin-film and CMOS domains, and (ii) to explore the application space for large-area sensor systems made with this hybrid technology. A priority has been to reduce the number of electrical interfaces between the thin-film and the CMOS domains. Interfaces have been reduced by using purely circuit-based approaches and also with algorithmic techniques. I will describe examples for both.

[1] N. Verma et al., Proc. IEEE 103, 690 (2015). [2] M. Ozatay et al., IEEE Custom Integrated Circuits Conf. (2018). [3] B. Glisic et al., Proc. IEEE 104, 1513 (2016). [4] Y. Hu et al., IEEE CICC (2014). [5] W. Rieutort-Louis et al., IEEE J. Solid-State Circuits 51, 281 (2016). [6] J. Sanz-Robinson et al., IEEE JSSC 51, 979 (2016). [7] T. Moy et al., IEEE JSSC 52, 309 (2017). [8] Y. Afsar et al., IEEE JSSC 53, 297 (2018).


Sigurd Wagner is Professor Emeritus of Electrical Engineering and Senior Scholar at Princeton University, where he has been working since 1980. He received his Ph.D. in physical chemistry in 1968 from the University of Vienna in Austria, came to the US as a post-doc at Ohio State University, worked at Bell Labs from 1970 to 1978, and was the founding chief of the Photovoltaic Research Branch at the Solar Energy Research Institute (now NREL) from 1978 to 1980. At Princeton he has been developing concepts and applications of large-area electronics, and has been an advocate of laboratory-based learning.

In collaboration with colleagues and students, he has introduced fundamentally new materials, concepts, devices, and structures to thin-film electronics: The first heterojunction solar cell with a ternary compound semiconductor, CuInSe2, and a quaternary compound, Cu2CdSnS4, among others; the Fermi-level dependence of the density of dangling-bond recombination centers in hydrogenated amorphous silicon; microfluidic fundamentals of forming device patterns by printing, and the design and fabrication of microfluidic devices with fluid flow controlled by programmed temperature gradients; foundational experiments on flexible, rollable, elastically stretchable, and conformably shaped electronic surfaces, and their basic design rules and architecture. At present he is working with his colleagues James C. Sturm and Naveen Verma on the demonstration of complete large-area hybrid thin-film/CMOS-circuit systems for sensing applications.

Sigurd Wagner is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, and a corresponding member of the Austrian Academy of Sciences. He was an Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Senior Fellow, received the 2009 Nevill Mott Prize, the 2014 ITC 10th Anniversary Prize, and the 2017 MRS David Turnbull Lectureship. A plaque in Princeton’s Electrical Engineering 24/7 undergrad laboratory honors his engagement in lab education.


*Established in 2009, the Eleanore Hale Wilson Fund supports engineering field leaders for travel to Minnesota to share their expertise and discoveries with University of Minnesota graduate students, faculty, and alumni. The fund also supports the receptions held in honor of each speaker.


October 25
3:45 pm - 5:15 pm


Keller Hall Annex 3-230
200 Union St SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455 United States
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