The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering plays a lead role in UAB's research and development of electrical and electronic devices. We work on both analog and digital devices that are used in a variety of applications ranging from sensors to computers.

As modern technology becomes increasingly reliant on such devices, ECE graduates with design and development experience will play a significant role in shaping the future. The goal of the ECE faculty is to provide such experiences through laboratories performing cutting-edge research and development activities.

Through our Bio-inspired Integrated Circuits Lab, we produce innovative design methodologies that can improve biomedical devices. Our current projects involve the improvement of power efficiency, telemetry and application of implantable devices.

Through our Very Large Scale Integrated Circuits Design Lab, we produce innovative design methodologies that can improve computing devices. Our current projects focus on improving security in computing hardware.

Our Signal Processing and Embedded Systems Lab operates as one of the core facilities of the university where we build electrical and electronic devices for a wide variety of applications.


Projects


combinational trojan

Very Large Scale Integrated (VLSI) circuits and systems are essential components of the computing platform in Integrated Chips (ICs), which are used for important and critical applications like medicine, defense, communication and automobiles. In the VLSI design lab at department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, we work on the design of Digital VLSI circuits and systems. While the primary design goals of VLSI circuits and systems include area, power, delay and reliability, the need to design secure VLSI hardware has increased. The growing demand of ICs and the eventual globalization of the industry have given way to fabrication of untrusted ICs which can be duplicated or hacked. The hacking of VLSI systems is enabled through malicious modifications of circuit elements called Hardware Trojans. Our work is focused on the detection of these Hardware Trojan circuits in nanometer level VLSI circuits, where the detection is harder due to the random and unpredictable behavior of the basic electronic device called the Metal Oxide Semiconductor Field Effect Transistor (MOSFET).


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Hardware Trojan: A malicious addition or modification to the existing circuit elements.

»  What hardware Trojans can do:
  • Change the functionality
  • Reduce the reliability
  • Leak valuable information
»  Applications that are likely to be targets for attackers:
  • Military applications
  • Aerospace applications
  • Implantable biomedical chips
  • Financial applications
  • Transportation security

trojan detect approach