Tutorial FD1

Hybrid ADCs: Practical Design Considerations and Examples

Seng-Pan (Ben), Synopsys Macau Ltd. and University of Macau
Yan (Julia) Zhu, University of Macau
Nan Sun, University of Texas

Abstract: This tutorial will address the comprehensive top-to-bottom design methodologies and considerations for modern Hybrid ADCs in Nano CMOS. In the first session, the ADC fundamentals and its general architectures with quantizer options will be overviewed with their advancement and design trade-offs. Then, the Hybrid design by architectural combinations, e.g. hybrid sub-ranging architecture, hybrid Pipeline architecture, hybrid Noise-shaping architecture, will be discussed with also their evolution. Afterward, the hybrid design technique, e.g. mixed signal processing nature, in ADC sub-building blocks, like low-voltage amplifier and higher resolution comparators, will be discussed as an important extension of Hybrid ADCs.

In the following two sub-sessions, practical design methodologies, considerations with multiple examples for Hybrid ADC design will be conducted. It starts with hybrid Nyquist ADC architectures: e.g. subranging flash+SAR, Pipelined-SAR, Subraning pipelined-SAR, multi-stage Multi-bit SAR. Then, Hybrid noise-shaping architecture: continuous-time SDM with SAR quantizer will be discussed.  An emerging hybrid noise-shaping SAR ADC, a combination of the merits of both SAR and delta-sigma ADC for high-resolution without requiring a normally high-resolution quantizer and DAC, will be discussed comprehensively. Finally, it will cover another increasingly evolving hybrid phase/time-domain ADCs that will represent and process an analog signal, not as a voltage, but as an oscillator phase or a time duration, thus leading to a highly scaling friendly feature but also an intrinsic integration and quantization capability.

After this full-day tutorial, it is envisioned that audiences will be able to understand the key driving forces for the latest developments and most important design considerations and techniques for evolving Hybrid ADCs.


Seng-Pan (Ben) U

(S’94 – M’00 – SM’05 – F’16) received the B.Sc. and M.Sc degree in 1991 and 1997, respectively, and the dual Ph.D. (Hons.) degrees from the University of Macau (UM) and the Instituto Superior Técnico (IST), Portugal in 2002 and 2004 respectively. Prof. U has been with Faculty of Science & Technology (FST), UM since 1994, where he is currently Visiting Professor of FST and Deputy Director of State-Key Laboratory of Analog & Mixed-Signal (AMS) VLSI. From 1999 to 2001, he was on leave to the Center of Microsystems in IST, as a Visiting Research Fellow. In 2001, Prof. U co-founded the Chipidea Microelectronics (Macau), Ltd. as the Engineering Director, and later the corporate VP-IP Operations Asia Pacific devoting to advanced AMS Semiconductor IP product development. The company was acquired in 2009 by the world leading EDA & IP provider Synopsys Inc. (NASDAQ: SNPS), currently as Synopsys Macau Ltd. He is also the corporate R&D director and site general manager. Prof. U has co-authored about 200 publications, four books (Springer and China Science Press) in the area of VHF SC filters, analog baseband for Multi-standard wireless transceivers and very high-speed TI ADCs. He also co-holds 14 US patents. Prof. U received 30+ research & academic/teaching awards and is co-recipient of the 2014 ESSCIRC Best Paper Award. He is also the Advisor for 30+ various student research award recipients, e.g. SSCS Pre-Doctoral Achievement Award, ISSCC Silk-Road Award, A-SSCC Student Design Contest, IEEE DAC/ISSCC Student Design Contest, ISCAS, MWSCAS, PRIME and etc. As the Macau founding Chairman, he received the 2012 IEEE SSCS Outstanding Chapter Award. Both at the 1st time from Macau, he received the Science & Technology (S&T) Innovation Award of Ho Leung Ho Lee Foundation in 2010, and also The National State S&T Progress Award in 2011. He also received both the 2012, 2014 and 2016 Macau S&T Invention Award and Progress Award. In recognition of his contribution in academic research & industrial development, he was awarded by Macau SAR government the Honorary Title of Value in 2010. He was also elected as the “Scientific Chinese of the Year 2012”. Prof. U is currently IEEE Fellow, He is appointed a member of the S&T Commission of China Ministry of Education and also S&T Committee of Macau SAR. He was the IEEE SSCS Distinguished Lecturer (2014-2015), A-SSCC 2013 and ISSCC 2018 Tutorial Speaker. He has also been on the technical review committee of various IEEE journals and the program committee/chair of IEEJ AVLSIWS, IEEE APCCAS, ICICS, PRIMEAsia and IEEE ASP-DAC’16. He is currently TPC of ISSCC, Sub-Committee Chair (Data Converters) of A-SSCC, the Analog Sub-Committee Chair of VLSI-DAT and Editorial Board member of the Journal AICSP.

Yan Zhu
(S’10- M’15) received the B.Sc. degree in electrical engineering and automation from Shanghai University, Shanghai, China, in 2006, and the M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical and electronics engineering from the University of Macau Macao, China, in 2008 and 2011, respectively. She is now an assistant professor with the State Key Laboratory of Analog and Mixed-Signal VLSI, University of Macau, Macao, China. She received Best Paper award in ESSCIRC 2014, the Student Design Contest award in A-SSCC 2011, the Chipidea Microelectronics Prize and Macao Scientific and Technological R&D Awards in 2012 and 2014, respectively, for outstanding academic and research achievements in microelectronics. She has published more than 45 technical journals and conference papers in her field of interests, and holds 3 US patents. Her research interests include low-power and wideband high-speed Nyquist A/D converters as well as digitally assisted data converter designs.

Nan Sun
Nan Sun is Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin. He received the B.S. degree from Tsinghua University, Beijing, China in 2006, where he ranked top in Department of Electronic Engineering. He received the Ph.D. degree from the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Harvard University in 2010.
Dr. Sun received NSF Career Award in 2013 and Jack Kilby Research Award from UT Austin in both 2015 and 2016. He is co-recipient of IEEE CICC Conference Best Student Paper Award in 2017. He also received Samsung Fellowship, Hewlett Packard Fellowship, and Analog Devices Outstanding Student Designer Award in 2003, 2006, and 2007, respectively. He won Harvard Teaching Award in three consecutive years: 2008, 2009, and 2010. He held the AMD Endowed Chair in UT Austin from 2013 to 2016. He serves in the technical program committee of IEEE Custom Integrated Circuits Conference and Asian Solid-State Circuit Conference. He is Associate Editor for IEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems – I, Regular Papers.