Chakrabarty Receives 2015 IEEE Computer Society Technical Achievement Award

Krishnendu Chakrabarty, the William H. Younger Distinguished Professor of Engineering in Duke University’s Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, has received the 2015 Technical Achievement Award from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Computer Society. The award is given for “outstanding and innovative contributions to the fields of computer and information science and engineering or computer technology” within the past 15 years.

Chakrabarty was cited for “pioneering and inspirational research on the design automation and testing of complex chips with the application to microfluidic biochips.” Beginning in the early 2000s, Chakrabarty was one of the first pioneers in creating design automation and optimization techniques for “lab-on-a-chip” devices, where a wide array of biomedical and chemical tests are miniaturized and completed on a microchip only a few centimeters wide.

Early on, his particular contributions included optimizing biochip designs, creating efficient algorithms to make the miniaturized integrated systems work and creating diagnostic processes to quickly test new designs. More recently, Chakrabarty’s work has helped develop cyberphysical microfluidic biochips, in which tiny droplets are manipulated and controlled to conduct on-chip reactions and error recovery is automated. These devices are revolutionizing a wide range of applications, such as high-throughput sequencing, parallel immunoassays, clinical diagnostics, DNA sequencing and protein crystallization.

By connecting computing techniques to biochemistry laboratory protocols, Chakrabarty’s research is making this technology widely accessible by allowing these chips to be controlled and reconfigured by software. Such solutions can erase the need for tedious chip redesign by hand for each target application.

Chakrabarty joins three other scientists in receiving this year’s award, which will be presented at a ceremony on June 3, 2015, in Atlanta, Georgia. For more information, visit the award’s website at http://www.computer.org/web/awards/technical-achievement