The Integrated Systems Laboratory (Laboratoire des Systèmes Intégrés – LSI) studies design technologies for circuits and systems.

The objective is to research the interplay of hardware and software design for traditional (computation on silicon) and non-traditional (nanotechnology and biosensors) systems. Topics of research include, but are not limited, to the following areas.

Design technologies for nanosystems, i.e., integrated systems that leverage emerging nanotechnologies. This area includes the modeling of hardware with dedicated languages, the compilation of hardware models into circuits, the relation between hardware and software design and its concurrent design (co-design), the system-level optimization from multiple objectives (e.g., performance, energy consumption, yield). The novel thrust in this area comes form the exploration of the use of new circuits technologies (e.g., silicon nanowires, carbon nanotubes, etc) within system design. These new technologies present unprecedented advantages and challenges, the former being related to the very high device density and the latter the large presence of defects.

Design of reliable, safe and secure integrated systems. As integrated systems become ubiquitously present, it becomes mandatory that their operation is reliable and robust. On one hand systems are given control of critical functions (vehicular control, medical control). On the other hand, we are confronted with both downscaled silicon devices (beyond the 32nm node) and novel nano-devices which have intrinsically higher failure rates. Research must address the combination of new device-level error-prone technologies within systems that must deliver to the user a high level of dependability. The new techniques have to be compatible with existing constraints for system integration, such as low energy consumption, which were not present in the design of large fault-tolerant systems of the past.

Design of 3-Dimensional (3D) integrated systems and the related design tools. Areas of research include both stacking of chips connected by through-silicon vias as well as the creation of native 3D circuits with vertical superposition of electronic devices. Research issues relate both to fabrication technologies and to design challenges, such as 3D interconnect via reconfigurable networks on chips (3D NoCs), signal integrity and clock distribution issues, physical design of 3-dimensional structures, etc.

Design and fabrication of bio-sensors and bio-interfaces, such as DNA and/or protein arrays, to probe biological regulation mechanisms for both clinical and biodiscovery objectives. Research involves both the design of novel hardware, mixing in situ computational units with biosensors, and the development of software systems for data analysis, including data integration methods for diagnosis and medication control and/or design. Specific examples are the design of implanted medical devices for continuous real time metabolic monitoring and the design of intelligent, safe and reliable drug delivery system.

LSI News

30 June 2016Prof. Giovanni De Micheli received the IEEE Computer Society’s 2016 Harry H. Goode Memorial Award for his seminal contributions to design and design tools for networks on chips. This award is given on the basis of achievements in the information processing field, which are considered of outstanding significance.

16 Mart 2016Prof. Giovanni De Micheli received the 2016 EDAA Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2016 DATE Conference, on March 15th in Dresden, Germany.

The EDAA Lifetime Achievement Award is given to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the state of the art in electronic design, automation and testing of electronic systems during their career. In order to be eligible, candidates must have made innovative contributions, which had an impact on the way electronic systems are being designed.

Past recipients are: Kurt Antreich(2003), Hugo De Man (2004), Jochen Jess (2005), Robert Brayton (2006), Tom Williams (2007), Ernest Kuh (2008), Jan Rabaey (2009), Daniel Gajski (2010), Melvin Breuer (2011), Alberto Sangiovanni-Vincentelli  (2012), Peter Marwedel (2013), Rolf Ernst (2014) and Lothar Thiele (2015).

5 December 2014 – The Symposium on Emerging Trends in Electronics organized by Prof. Giovanni De Micheli took place in Montreux, Switzerland on December 1-2, 2014. About 100 top experts from the electronics domain came together at the Grand Hôtel Suisse Majestic, to hear presentations on cutting edge themes and to participate in panel discussions. Participation was by invitation only. Presentation slides and videos are available from these links: Centre SI and The symposium was funded by the Swiss Government initiative


3 May 2014 –  Our 2013 Design Automation Conference (DAC) invited paper entitled “Towards Structured ASICs Using Polarity-Tunable SiNW Transistors” now has an accompanying video presentation:

21 June 2013 – A perspective authored by Thomas Ernst (CEA-LETI, MINATEC, Grenoble, France) entitled “Controlling the Polarity of Silicon Nanowire Transistors” has been published in the Science journal (Vol. 340 no. 6139 pp. 1414-1415). Dr. Ernst based his perspective mainly on the research co-directed by Profs Giovanni De Micheli and Yusuf Leblebici on ambipolar silicon nanowire transistors.

21 March 2013 – Our recent paper entitled “Electronic Implants: Power Delivery and Management” by Jacopo Olivo, Sara Ghoreishizadeh, Sandro Carrara and Giovanni De Micheli has been presented at the Design, Automation and Test in Europe (DATE) Conference taking place in Grenoble, France, 18 – 22 March 2013. The paper was received with very high interest and media coverage.



9 January 2013 – Luca Amarù has won the best thesis presentation award with his talk entitled “Logic Synthesis for Emerging Technologies” at FETCH 2013, taking place in Leysin, Switzerland, 7-9 January 2013.

14 August 2012 – The paper by Michele De Marchi entitled “Polarity Control in Double-Gate, Gate-All-Around Vertically Stacked Silicon Nanowire FETs has been accepted for an oral presentation at the highly prestigious 2012 International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM) taking place in San Francisco, California, 10-12 December 2012.

6 June 2012 – The conference paper by Shashikanth Bobba entitled “Process/Design Co-optimization of Regular Logic Tiles for Double-Gate Silicon Nanowire Transistors”  has received the Best Paper Award at the 8th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Nanoscale Architectures (NANOARCH 2012) in Amsterdam, Netherlands, 4-6 July 2012.

24 May 2012 – Prof. Giovanni De Micheli has received the 2012 IEEE Circuits and Systems Society Mac Van Valkenburg Award. Named for distinguished electrical engineering professor Mac Van Valkenburg, the award honors an individual for outstanding technical contributions and distinguishable leadership in a field within the scope of the CAS Society. The award is based on the quality and significance of contribution, and continuity of technical leadership. The award was recently announced at the IEEE International Symposium on Circuits and Systems, held in Seoul, Korea.

1 April 2012 – The 4th edition of the “D43D: Design for 3D Silicon Integration Workshop” will take place at EPFL between June 25-27, 2012. Click here to go to D43D website.

22 March 2012 – Professor De Micheli ranked 2nd in “Hardware and Architectures” by Microsoft.

21 February 2012 – Hu Xu and Vasilis Pavlidis of LSI have been awarded First Prize in the Innovation Cup, a competition organised by STMicroelectronics. This prize, worth CHF 22 000, rewards their global concept that is aimed at perfecting training techniques for badminton players. It involves the insertion of sensors in the racquet and one of the sports shoes, in order to analyse their movement. The winners are currently working on the creation of the first prototype. It is worth noting that their project, and its related business plan, beat out 57 other proposals coming from universities in Italy, France and Switzerland.

18 October 2010 – Prof. Giovanni De Micheli has been elected to the European Academy of Engineering: Academia Europaea. In September 2010, Prof. Giovanni De Micheli was invited to join the 2’300 members of the Academy of Europe (Academia Europaea), an academic, non-governmental, association based in London.

1 October 2010The “Magistrale” crowns the founder of Yahoo. Magistrale 2010 took place in the marquee installed on the Place Cosandey. In one of the highlights of the ceremony, Jerry Yang, co-founder of Yahoo, received a doctorat honoris causa from his former teacher, Prof. Giovanni De Micheli, Centre SI Director. Watch video