Bhatti, Mukhopadhyay Win NSF CAREER Awards

Pamela Bhatti is an assistant professor in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Georgia Tech. She specializes in bioengineering and microsystems.

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Pamela Bhatti and Saibal Mukhopadhyay, both assistant professors in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Georgia Tech, have received National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER Awards.

Dr. Bhatti received the NSF CAREER Award for her project, "An Ultra-Low-Power MEMS-Based Implantable Biosystem for Restoring Vestibular Function-Platform for an Integrated Human-Centered Hybrid Biosystem."

Individuals suffering from bilateral vestibular dysfunction experience postural imbalance, dizziness, and nausea, and currently, they have no effective therapeutic options. Vestibular and associated balance dysfunction often leads to falls, and falls are linked to high rates of mortality and morbidity in the elderly, contributing significantly to today's skyrocketing healthcare costs.

The objective of Dr. Bhatti's research is to realize an ultra-low-power implantable biomedical microsystem capable of activating vestibular nerve fibers in the inner ear serving to convey head rotation cues to the central nervous system. The approach is to fabricate an ultra-low-power passive MEMS-based angular rotation sensors, interface the sensors with low-power signal processing and stimulation electronics, and integrate highly flexible polymeric multichannel electrode arrays for focused stimulation of vestibular nerve fibers. As a result, a viable low-power implantable vestibular biosystem may restore vestibular function and improve the quality of life for individuals experiencing vestibular hypofunction.

Dr. Mukhopadhyay received his NSF CAREER Award for his project, "3D Heterogeneous Integration for Power Reduction in Embedded Systems: Application to Wireless Image Sensing and Transport."

Wireless image/video communication networks are proliferating rapidly in applications like smart camera systems, military and civilian surveillance, green buildings, immersive computing, bio-telemetry, and autonomous robots/vehicles. Low-power embedded systems for multimedia sensing and communication are essential for their effective deployment.

Dr. Mukhopadhyay's research explores principles to minimize power dissipation of embedded systems for real-time imaging, high-volume multimedia processing, and wireless communication in time-varying noisy channel under Quality-of-Service (QoS) constraints. The heterogeneous integration of an image sensor, memory, digital, and RF in a 3D-integrated circuit (IC) is explored to achieve this goal. The functional and physical interactions of components, algorithms, and environment in the 3D heterogeneous IC is investigated to create system design, physical analysis, and real-time control principles for power reduction. The principles are applied to design a low-power 3D wireless image sensor node for a high-quality image/video communication network.

The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the National Science Foundation's most prestigious awards in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education, and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations.

Last revised August 1, 2017