Design007 Magazine


Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 27 of 77

28 The PCB Design Magazine • May 2017 SNAPEDA: RECRUITING TOP ENGINEERING TALENT IN AN AMAZON WORLD A team of researchers, led by the University of Minnesota, have discovered a new nano-scale thin film material with the highest- ever conductivity in its class. The new material could lead to smaller, faster, and more power- ful electronics, as well as more ef- ficient solar cells. The discovery is being published today in Nature Communications. "The high conductivity and wide bandgap make this an ideal material for making optically transparent conducting films which could be used in a wide variety of electronic devices, including high-power electronics, electronic displays, touch screens and even solar cells in which light needs to pass through the device," said Bharat Jalan, a University of Minnesota chemical engineering and materials science professor and the lead researcher on the study. Currently, most of the transparent conductors in our electronics use a chemical element called indium. The price of indium has generally gone up over the last two decades, which has added to the cost of current display technology. In this study, researchers found a solution. They devel- oped a new transparent con- ducting thin film using a novel synthesis method, in which they grew a BaSnO3 thin film (a com- bination of barium, tin and oxy- gen, called barium stannate), but replaced elemental tin source with a chemi- cal precursor of tin. The chemical precursor of tin has unique, radical properties that enhanced the chemical reactivity and greatly improved the metal oxide formation process. Both barium and tin are significantly cheaper than indium and are abundantly available. "Even though this material has the highest con- ductivity within the same materials class, there is much room for improvement in addition, to the outstanding potential for discovering new physics if we decrease the defects. That's our next goal," Jalan said. Discovery of Thin Transparent Film Could Improve Electronics and Solar Cell metric—including our interns—and we all share how we're seeing those metrics grow. This al- lows us to monitor performance, but more im- portantly, work together as a team to help each other perform better. Shaughnessy: One aspect of hiring that compa- nies seem to have trouble with is finding people who fit the culture of that particular company. Do you have any insight on this? Baker: Culture is important, and it's something that has been challenging. Do we hire the en- gineer with decades of experience from large companies, or a recent grad without much ex- perience, but lots of raw intelligence and pas- sion? We realized that our ideal team members are somewhere in the middle, and can almost adapt to the mindsets of both these archetypes depending on the context. Also, as I mentioned earlier, a drive to genuinely be passionate about streamlining the PCB design process is 100% crucial. Shaughnessy: Do you have any advice for other companies in EDA seeking to hire qualified employ- ees? Baker: The more candidates can see how funda- mental EDA is to all the amazing products that we love, and how enjoyable and rewarding the technical challenges are, the easier it will be to recruit. If we, as an industry, are going to com- pete with Google and Amazon, then we need to really show why EDA is great. Shaughnessy: Thanks for your time, Natasha. Baker: Thank you. PCBDESIGN

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Design007 Magazine - PCBD-May2017