Microelectronics Olympiad backed by Synopsys, IEEE

LONDON – It won’t be speed over 100-meters but knowledge about microelectronics at the nanometer-scale that will determine the winners in a competition to take place in Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, later this year. The idea behind the forthcoming electronic engineering competition is to turn microelectronics engineers into medal winners and inspire the next generation to enter the electronics industry.

The Seventh Annual International Microelectronics Olympiad of Armenia will be held on October 4, 2012 in, Yerevan, Armenia, and will be held in cooperation with the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Test Technology Technical Council (TTTC). Initiated in 2006, the Olympiad is held under the patronage of the Armenia prime minister and Synopsys Armenia CJSC is the general organizer and a sponsor.

Armenia is a former Soviet Republic that lies to the south of Georgia and to the east of Turkey. It has a good educational infrastructure that has produced many engineering and software graduates.

For one day engineers in the Olympiad compete in the areas of digital IC design and test, analog and mixed-signal IC design and test, semiconductor devices and technology, and mathematic and algorithmic issues of electronic design automation.

“The first Armenian Microelectronics Olympiad in 2006 attracted 82 participants. The event has since grown to an international contest including numerous award categories and 349 participants from 12 countries,” said Rich Goldman, the president of the Olympiad Organizing Committee, CEO of Synopsys Armenia and vice president for corporate marketing and strategic alliances at Synopsys. “Working with IEEE will enable further growth.”

Operating under the motto “Recognize the best, inspire the next,” the Olympiad aims to highlight the brightest, most talented engineers under the age of 30. Additional goals are to stimulate the development of microelectronics in the host country Armenia and in participating countries, by recognizing and inspiring talented engineers. In particular, the hope is that the publicity around the competition will increase interest in microelectronics among young specialists.

It is also expected to produce data to guide adjustments to educational programs in the countries contestants come from.

“This collaboration is a win-win-win situation for IEEE, for the Olympiad, and for Armenia as a country,” said Dr. Yervant Zorian, president of the IEEE TTTC and chief architect at Synopsys. “The involvement of IEEE, the largest organization of electrical and electronic engineers, helps the Olympiad gain more international recognition. The Olympiad contributes to IEEE’s efforts to encourage and support an interest in technology in young adults; holding the contest in Armenia highlights the country’s technical leadership.”

As with the Olympic games the Microelectronics Olympiad has attracted a set of sponsors including: Synopsys, Microsoft, Vivacell-MTS, Armenia’s leading mobile operator and the Union of Manufacturers and Businessmen of Armenia.

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