Electrical and Computer Engineering Team Receives NSF Grant

The National Science Foundation’s Division of Electrical, Communications and Cyber Systems (ECCS) has awarded a three-year grant of $500,001 to a team led by Principal Investigator Xiaoguang “Leo” Liu, an assistant professor in the UC Davis Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE). The project, titled “Reconfigurable Bandpass Sampling Receivers for Software-Defined Radio Applications,” will be a collaborative effort with co-PIs Paul J. Hurst, Bernard Levy and Stephen H. Lewis, all professors in the UC Davis ECE Department.

UC Davis Professor Xiaoguang "Leo" Liu

UC Davis Professor Xiaoguang “Leo” Liu

The proposal addresses issues crucial to the wireless technologies that have become ubiquitous in today’s world: the need for future systems to possess greater functionality, longer battery life, smaller size and lower cost. The challenge becomes even greater due to the proliferation of vastly different wireless standards, devices and systems, along with the increased congestion of existing systems; these variables create significant implementation problems for cellular infrastructure providers and manufacturers. Liu and his team have proposed a band-pass sampling receiver architecture that will be reconfigurable in terms of operating frequency, bandwidth and signal waveforms. These next-gen receivers will enable highly versatile mobile systems and a more economical and environmentally friendly telecommunication infrastructure, resulting in a more efficient utilization of — and greater public access to — the radio spectrum.

Liu earned his ECE doctorate at Purdue University in 2010, after completing his undergraduate work in engineering and electrical engineering at China’s Zhejiang University. He joined the UC Davis College of Engineering in 2011, after spending a year as a post-doc research associate at Purdue.

Hurst obtained his undergraduate (1977), master’s (1979) and doctorate (1983) degrees at UC Berkeley, all in electrical engineering. After a brief industry stint as a design engineer for Silicon Systems Inc., he joined the UC Davis College of Engineering in 1986.

Levy completed his undergraduate work at the Ecole des Mines in Paris, France, and then came to the United States to earn a doctorate in electrical engineering at Stanford University, in 1979. He next served in MIT’s Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science for eight years, before joining the UC Davis College of Engineering in 1987.

Lewis finished his undergraduate studies at Rutgers University, then earned a master’s degree at Stanford, in 1980, followed by a doctorate at UC Berkeley, in 1987. He simultaneously worked as a member of the technical staff at Bell Laboratories for a decade, first at Whippany, NJ, and later at Reading, Penn. He joined the UC Davis College of Engineering in 1991.

The NSF’s Division of Electrical, Communications and Cyber Systems addresses fundamental research issues underlying device and component technologies, power, controls, computation, networking, communications and cyber technologies. ECCS supports the integration and networking of intelligent systems principles at the nano, micro and macro scales, for a variety of application domains in healthcare, homeland security, disaster mitigation, energy, telecommunications, the environment, transportation, manufacturing and other systems-related areas.