Engineering Professor Receives National Science Foundation CAREER Grant

Issue Date: 
February 11, 2013

Yiran Chen, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering in the University of Pittsburgh’s Swanson School of Engineering, has been awarded a five-year, $450,000 CAREER grant from the National Science Foundation. The CAREER Program offers prestigious awards that support junior faculty members who demonstrate a great understanding of their fields through groundbreaking research. 

The objective of Chen’s research is to leverage the unique properties of a memristor device—an emerging nano device that can remember electrical currents in a fashion similar to the way the human brain processes memory—to understand the synaptic behavior in electrical neural networks. The proposed neuromorphic computing circuit would act like a human brain that runs with high-power efficiency and could be manufactured at an ultralow cost. 

Chen has been a member of the University’s faculty since 2010 and has more than 120 refereed publications, 69 granted U.S. patents, and multiple best-paper awards in the areas of postsilicon devices, very-large-scale integration (VLSI) design, low-power circuit and architecture, neuromorphic computing, and sensing technology.