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Date: July 28th, 2014
Digital Delta-Sigma Modulators



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The following schedule and location hold for most events, unless otherwise noted:

  • 6:30pm: Networking/Light Dinner
  • 7:00pm: Announcement
  • 7:05pm: Presentation
  • 8:15pm: Adjourn

Cost: Free. $2 donation accepted for food.

Location: QualComm Santa Clara, Building B, 3165 Kifer Road, Santa Clara, CA

Digital Delta-Sigma Modulators

Date: July 28th, 2014

Michael Peter Kennedy
Professor of Microelectronic Engineering
University of College Cork



Although Digital Delta-Sigma Modulators (DDSMs) are more widely employed
commercially than analog DSMs, they are less studied. In particular,
issues such as spur generation are not well understood. In the past
decade, much progress has been made in this field. This presentation gives
a brief introduction to DDSMs for non-specialists, providing insights into
the unusual behavior which is often observed in applications. By
understanding the root cause of the behavior, novel solutions have been
developed to eliminate many of the problems—such as spurs and idle
tones—which have historically plagued applications containing DDSMs.
Furthermore, by understanding the role of the DDSM in a complete signal
processing chain, we show how the concepts of error-masking and
bus-splitting can be used in novel architectures to reduce the hardware
complexity or to increase throughput.


Michael Peter Kennedy is Professor of Microelectronic Engineering at
University College Cork (UCC). He received the BE (Electronics) degree
from UCD in 1984, the MS and PhD from the University of California at
Berkeley in 1987 and 1991, respectively, and the DEng from the National
University of Ireland in 2010. He joined UCC as Chair of the Department of
Microelectronic Engineering in 2000. He served as Dean of the Faculty of
Engineering from 2003 through 2005 and as Vice-President for Research from
2005 to 2011.

He has over 340 research publications (including four patents) in the
fields of oscillator design, hysteresis, neural networks, nonlinear
dynamics, chaos communication, mixed-signal test, and frequency synthesis.
He has worked as a consultant for SMEs and multinationals in the
microelectronics industry and is founding Director of the Microelectronics
Industry Design Association (MIDAS Ireland) and the Microelectronic
Circuits Centre of Ireland (MCCI).

He was made a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic
Engineers (IEEE) in 1998 for contributions to the theory of neural
networks and nonlinear dynamics and for leadership in nonlinear circuits
research and education. He has received many prestigious awards including
Best Paper (International Journal of Circuit Theory and Applications), the
88th IEE Kelvin Lecture, IEEE Millenium and Golden Jubilee Medals, the
inaugural Royal Irish Academy Parsons Award in Engineering Sciences, and
the IEEE Solid-State Circuits Society Chapter of the Year Award 2010. In
2004, he was elected to membership of the Royal Irish Academy and was
made a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers of Ireland by Presidential
Invitation. He was made a Fellow of the Irish Academy of Engineering in

From 2005 to 2007, he was President of the European Circuits Society and
Vice-President of the IEEE Circuits and Systems (CAS) Society (with
responsibility for Europe, Africa and the Middle East). During 2012 and
2013, he was a Distinguished Lecturer of the IEEE CAS Society. He has been
Secretary for International Relations of the Royal Irish Academy since
2012. He is currently chair of the PE7 Starter Grants Panel at the
European Research Council.

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