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Brian Sierawski is a Research Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering at Vanderbilt University. His research interest focuses on the proper operation of microelectronics in space environments. Ionizing radiation is capable of causing single event effects and modern electronics can be more sensitive to single event transients and upsets than previous generations. The response of an electronic device is explored through a combination of tests performed at particle accelerator facilities and simulation. Dr. Sierawski’s work measuring the low-energy proton single event upset cross section in sub-65 nm memories has helped inform predictions of their on-orbit error rate. He additionally showed that muons, naturally occurring and abundant terrestrial sub-atomic particles, are also capable of causing bit errors in modern commercial memories. In predicting error rates, he is an advanced user of Vanderbilt’s MRED code to perform Monte Carlo radiation transport. He has also developed tools to simulate digital circuit response to single event transients by fault injection in gate level models. He developed and administers the CREME website for public access to environment models and error rate predictions. Recently, he has been involved in the development, assembly, and operation of on-orbit radiation effects experiments. These experiments make use of the CubeSat platform and launch availability to collect data and refine rate prediction models. The first such experiment was launched in Oct. 2015 and continues to function.

Brian received his B.S.E in Computer Engineering and M.S.E. in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of Michigan in 2002 and 2004, and his Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Vanderbilt University in 2011.


Link: Vanderbilt Institute for Space and Defense Electronics Video