IEEE Solid-State Circuits Society Education Award Goes to Heydari

Heydari was recognized by the IEEE Solid-State Circuit Society for his contributions to education in the field, specifically in the areas of radio-frequency and millimeter-wave integrated circuits.

Feb. 23, 2021 - Payam Heydari, UC Irvine professor of electrical engineering and computer science, has received the 2021 Innovative Education Award from the IEEE Solid-State Circuits Society. The award, which comes with a plaque and a $5,000 honorarium, recognizes SSCS members who have made significant contributions to education in the field of solid-state circuits using innovative approaches that have a broad impact.

Heydari, an IEEE fellow, was acknowledged for worldwide contributions to education and dissemination of knowledge in the area of microelectronics, specifically impact on research and education in radio-frequency and millimeter-wave integrated circuits. He has delivered more than 100 distinguished lectures to higher education institutions, IEEE chapters and high-tech companies; and has presented keynote speeches, webinars, tutorials and short courses at premier IEEE solid-state circuits conferences.

He was one of 11 experts who presented the first massive open online course (MOOC) on key circuit concepts and trends in 2014-2015; the introductory course became a model for subsequent MOOCs.

At UCI, he developed several courses on oscillators and phase-locked loops, data converters, RFIC design and millimeter-wave circuits that led to the creation of a circuit specialization in the electrical engineering graduate program. Many of his lectures were attended by analog and radio-frequency design engineers from local companies including Broadcom, Mindspeed (now M/A-Com) and Qualcomm. 

Heydari also established a program that allowed undergraduate student teams to participate in classes offered by the MOSIS foundry service, a joint DARPA/NSF program that provides VLSI (very large scale integration) integrated circuit fabrication access to universities. His close collaboration with MOSIS enabled the teams to enroll in courses and design and fabricate their integrated circuits at no cost. Additionally, he solicited local industry experts to review and evaluate these projects.

Heydari is the recipient of numerous other awards, including the Distinguished Engineering Educator award from the Orange County Engineering Council; the Guillemin-Cauer award and Darlington award, both from the IEEE Circuits and Systems Society; and Samueli School awards for faculty research and teaching excellence. He was named one of 10 Outstanding Innovators by UCI’s Office of Technology Alliances.

"I am honored and humbled to receive this major society award. My true passion in life is to be able to conduct creative research in the area of radio-frequency and millimeter-wave, and terahertz integrated circuits design, and be able to disseminate what I have learned to large student groups, design engineers and researchers,” Heydari said. “I have been fortunate that the Solid-State Circuit Society community and the University of California have given me the opportunity to fulfill this passion. This award gives me additional encouragement to work harder to make tangible impact on advances in science and technology.”

-Anna Lynn Spitzer

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