The VDE Association for Electrical, Electronic and Information Technologies is the German counterpart to the IEEE. The interdisciplinary VDE/VDI Society of Microelectronics, Microsystems and Precision Engineering (GMM) has close to 10,000 members. The GMM presents an annual Best Paper Award. On October 30, 2019, the award has been presented to Michael Zwerger and Maximilian for their paper on analog power-down synthesis, published in the IEEE Trans. on Computer Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems (TCAD) 2017.
Powering down analog circuit parts cannot be done by by inserting a switch at the supply - it would delete one cascading level from the available supply voltage. Instead all indvidual transistor gates have to be switched off, such that no current flow remains, no floating nodes remain, and voltage symmetries are maintained to avoid aging.The state of the art is that these power-transistors are inserted manually, a tedious and error-prone task. The awarded paper presents the first method to insert the necessary power-down transistors automatically and correctly by construction.