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Who We Are


Background


The Institut für Datentechnik und Kommunikationsnetze (IDA, Institute of Computer and Communication Network Engineering) represents the area of computer engineering in the faculties of electrical engineering and computer science. Computer engineering, as the science of architecture and design of information processing systems, has become a basic industrial technology. While the classic computer industry is, to a large extent, dominated by American companies, most European industries design and deploy embedded control systems, from consumer electronics to mechanical engineering. For that reason and because of the profiles of the regional industry and of the engineering faculties at the university, the research and teaching at the institute is not limited to the classical computer architecture topics, but extends to computer aided hardware/software design of embedded systems with sophisticated exemplary applications.

Our official institute homepage is www.ida.ing.tu-bs.de. We are one of the institutes of the Technical University at Braunschweig www.tu-braunschweig.de.

Scientific Approach


Research at the institute is mainly characterized by some major long term research projects with students and staff working together in larger teams using research platforms. This allows to do research on complex problems. At the same time, the teams try to apply their results to industrial pilot projects. The objective of these pilot projects is to identify new problems and to get an early assessment of solutions.

Research Groups


  • Embedded System Design Automation (Prof. Dr.-Ing. R. Ernst)
  • Advanced VLSI Design (Prof. Dr.-Ing. Mladen Berekovic)
  • Communication Networks and Systems (Prof. Dr. techn. A. Jukan)
  • Data Processing Units for Space Applications (Prof. Dr.-Ing. H. Michalik)

Group: Data Processing Units for Space Applications (Prof. Dr.-Ing. H. Michalik)


Data gained by sensors onboard of spacecraft have to be preprocessed, compressed and stored prior to transmission to earth. These and additional tasks are performed by data processing units (DPUs) and semiconductor main memories. Because of the restricted resources (mass, electrical energy) and because of the specific environmental conditions (radiation induced malfunctions of electronic devices, extended temperature range, mechanical stress during launch phase) both the H/W and the S/W have to be designed individually for each application.

Typical DPU characteristics are: low energy consumption, low mass and low volume, the use of the task specific preprocessors, e.g. for real-time classification of solar wind ions with respect to mass, charge and energy, or for real-time compression of image data from planets, moons, asteroids and comets, the application of error-correcting codes particularly for protection against radiation induced errors in status data and the use of hierarchical redundancy structures. These activities are connected to our educational tasks in electrical engineering by the fact that students work on realistic engineering tasks. They are confronted with all aspects of the design and of the implementation of complete data processing systems.

Tasks and requirements vary from project to project and the implementation process stretches from system design to unit assembly and test. Since 1969, seventeen DPUs and nine spaceborne memories have been designed and implemented. Our test system, developed for the test of DPUs and fully integrated instruments, is in use at various research institutions in Europe and in USA. The mass memories which presently are installed in European Spacecrafts, are to a large extend a cooperative effort of our Institute with an aerospace company. Studies of advanced spaceborne mass memories are in progress.

 

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Questions or problems regarding this web site should be directed to gseos@ida.ing.tu-bs.de.
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Last modified: 09/05/2008.