EECS

Oregon State’s Semiconductor Program

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Collaborative Innovation Center.
Jan. 30, 2023

There is powerful energy within Oregon State University’s semiconductor innovation program. The College of Engineering’s combination of top-tier faculty, talented students, and quality facilities, coupled with strong industry partners, and the accelerant of a true, interdisciplinary approach has created a technology hotbed where substantial advancements are taking place. This alignment of strengths in engineering, science, and computation has supported over 2,000 engineering graduates per year, helped launch three active semiconductor centers, and given rise to the $200 million Jen-Hsun and Lori Huang Collaborative Innovation Complex that is set to open in 2025. With all of this, it’s easy to see why the semiconductor research program is buzzing with such impressive energy. The opportunity for industry to plug in, advance research, and make connections with top faculty and students for workforce development is powerful. And with 15% of the U.S. semiconductor workforce centered right here in the Pacific Northwest, many of whom graduated from Oregon State, partnering with the Oregon State is a sure-fire way to stay competitive and meet workforce-diversification goals.

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Graphic of OSU's semiconductor program components

The semiconductor research program at Oregon State can be best understood in four, interconnected technology areas: IC Design, Electronic Materials & Devices, Process Technology, and Packaging & Integration.

Spanning each of these areas is our faculty’s remarkable work in artificial intelligence, which will see a greater role in semiconductor research as the CIC comes online and is leveraged to advance even more collaborations across the college and out into industry. The CIC, which will be built on Oregon State’s central campus and will house one of the world’s most powerful supercomputers at a university, will also boast a state-of-the-art clean room, virtual reality theater, and water labs. Further, with the federal CHIPS and Science Act, which provides $52.7 billion for American semiconductor research, development, manufacturing, and workforce development, there are exciting possibilities for Oregon State to foster even more rapid advancement in all four of these areas in partnership with our most important stakeholders.

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People working with electronics equipment

CDADIC

The Center for Design of Analog-Digital Integrated Circuits is an internationally recognized research consortium in collaboration with Washington State University and the University of Washington and was originally established under the National Science Foundation’s I/UCRC program. The Center focuses on innovative research and education in analog, RF, and mixed-signal integrated circuit design in collaboration with key industry partners. The center research covers a broad range of application domains, including communications, sensing, transportation, security, and medical technology, and pushes the boundaries in high performance, low power consumption, and miniaturization. The Center contributes to the national workforce development by educating and training work-ready future employees in state-of-the-art analog/RF and mixed-signal integrated circuit and system design in industry-relevant areas.

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People working in a clean room

MaSC

The Materials Synthesis and Characterization Facility is a comprehensive resource that serves as both an open user facility and an innovation center. MaSC faculty and staff provide deep experience in thin-film deposition, device fabrication, and materials analysis, serving as a hub for materials and device development on the Oregon State University campus. OSU’s inorganic materials research has recently elicited worldwide interest in areas including transparent transistors, inorganic photoresists, and blue pigments. These developments and recent hiring of numerous top-flight researchers have positioned MaSC for growth in industrial research engagement.
 

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Close up of equipment

NNI

The Northwest Nanotechnology Infrastructure site is a collaboration between the University of Washington and Oregon State University and is part of the National Science Foundation - National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure program. The NNI site specializes in world class nanotechnology infrastructure paired with technical and educational leadership in integrated photonics, advanced energy materials and devices, and bio-nano interfaces and systems; for a broad and diverse user base, its facilities act as a center for innovation for making, measuring, and mentoring to advance the use of nanotechnology in science and society.

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People looking at equipment

ATAMI

The Advanced Technology and Manufacturing Institute has 80,000 ft2 of advanced manufacturing and process facilities in a dynamic and highly collaborative environment. ATAMI is home to OSU College of Engineering faculty labs with a focus on advanced manufacturing processes, methods and materials, and the RAPID Manufacturing Institute which focuses on chemical process intensification. ATAMI also has private sector tenants, including small and large companies, to develop nano and microtechnology solutions, from efficient jet engines to a portable dialysis device. ATAMI users include biotech, semiconductor, solar, defense and advanced materials companies, and academia.

Home to industry-changing breakthroughs

College of Engineering faculty include leading experts in analog, digital, and millimeter-wave circuit design for applications in computing, low-power electronics, communications, and sensing. Further, novel advancements in semiconductor research often hinge on multidisciplinary collaborations, a quality for which Oregon State is well known, and which has been a key recruiting point for leading researchers and staff. One notable example can be seen in the collaboration on nanolithography with the College of Science. This “technical marriage” led famously to the development of extreme ultraviolet photoresists and birthed the Oregon State spinout company Inpria. This enabling technology, which allows industry to stay in step with Moore’s Law by making computer chips smaller and faster, will be seen in next-generation chip development the world over.

Across all four primary research areas, Oregon State Engineering is at the forefront of many technological breakthroughs. Examples include:

IC DESIGN

  • Advances in analog/digital converters
  • Low-cost MIMO transceivers using CMOS technology
  • Low-cost phased array atenna in silicon germanium 
  • Output prediction logic technique
  • Modeling and design of integrated circuit protection systems
  • Resource-efficient AI accelerators
  • Batteryless and power-autonomous electronics [using RF and thermoelectric energy harvesting]
  • Side-channel resistance crypto designs

ELECTRONIC MATERIALS & DEVICES

  • Advances in amorphous oxide semiconductors that have revolutionized display technologies, including transparent thin-film transistors
  • Pioneering research in dielectric, magnetic and piezoelectric materials
  • Groundbreaking work in tunneling electronics, sensors, and advanced manufacturing methods

PROCESS TECHNOLOGY

  • Nanolithography, high sensitivity resists for extreme ultraviolet patterning
  • ALD of 2D semiconductor dichalcogenides and nanolaminates
  • Development of semiconductor inks for inkjet-printed thin film transistors and solar cells 
  • Characterization of processes using operando techniques
  • Sustainable solution based processing to improve materials utilization

PACKAGING & INTEGRATION

  • Advances in supply chain logistics/life-cycle analysis 
  • Flexible and stretchable electronics for robotics and wearable devices
  • Heterogeneous integration for IC-enabled biosensors at scale
  • High-resolution 3D printing for direct-write interconnects and in-package RF devices
  • Anti-tamper solutions based on physical unclonable functions

Large local footprint

Home to some of the largest and most influential manufacturers and suppliers in the semiconductor ecosystem, the hub around Oregon State University includes device manufacturers, fabrication equipment manufacturers, materials developers, gas, chemicals, and services, and developers of electronic design automation software. With Intel leading the pack at over 20,000 employees, just 60 miles north, it’s no wonder Oregon State is so deeply connected to tech, as the collaborative opportunities are extremely rich.

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Map of semiconductor industry in Oregon
Image courtesy of the Oregon Semiconductor Competitiveness Task Force

Education and workforce development

The College of Engineering, one of the nation’s largest, is a prominent contributor to semiconductor workforce development. Today, the college graduates over 2,000 engineers and computer scientists each year. To meet the surging demand for skilled graduates in the semiconductor industry, the college is committed to creating forward-looking, multi-disciplinary educational and training programs that will expand and diversify the workforce.

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Explanation of workforce development for the semiconductor industry

Structure and opportunity

The biggest opportunity stemming from the College of Engineering’s semiconductor research program is in “leveraging the college’s use-inspired research portfolio in combination with the university’s renowned expertise in artificial intelligence and ongoing efforts to address critical global issues including sustainability,” according to Tom Weller, head of the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. This strategy aligns firmly with the core research priorities identified in the Department of Energy’s Report of the Basic Research Needs for Microelectronics, which, as Weller further notes, “describes the convergence of co-design principles where each scientific discipline informs and engages the other to achieve orders of magnitude improvements in system-level performance.” 

A convergence of energy, talent, resources, and drive is clearly taking place within Oregon State’s semiconductor research program. Take some time to dive in and see where you — as a collaborative industry partner, student, faculty member, or outside government agency — might fit in, to advance your own agenda and further the program.

To explore collaborative opportunities, or the semiconductor program in general, get in touch with us at: semi-osu@oregonstate.edu.

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Advancements in semiconductors through surface chemistry: an interview with Professor Gregory Herman

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Greg Herman and student in the lab

Gregory Herman, professor of chemical engineering at Oregon State University, is a leading researcher in next-generation oxide semiconductor materials. Herman made the jump to Oregon State after collaborating with the university for many years, first at HP and later at Sharp Laboratories of America. At HP, he was part of the team that secured the patent for indium gallium zinc oxide, a key material used in many of today's consumer electronics. At Sharp, he helped transfer indium gallium zinc oxide into production for display manufacturing. Having developed a great working relationship with Chih-hung Chang, professor of chemical engineering, the move to Oregon State came easily. His move was fueled by the university's strong collaborative efforts with industry, its state-of-the-art facilities, and its forward-looking leadership.

In a recent interview, Herman spoke about his history in industry, how and why he came to Oregon State, and the research he is involved in today.

Can you please tell us a little bit about yourself?

I received my Ph.D. in chemistry at the University of Hawaii, where I did my dissertation on metal semiconductor contacts, and atomic imaging of atoms in semiconductors using photoelectron holography, which was a new technique at the time. I then did a National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Naval Research Laboratory. I was based at Brookhaven National Laboratory, at the National Synchrotron Light Source, where I did research related to measuring excited electronic states in gallium arsenide, a high-performance semiconductor. This research was new and exciting, and I found it intellectually stimulating. As a result, I have continued working in surface chemistry and surface physics throughout my career. After my postdoc, I went to work at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory for about eight years. I was one of the early scientists that were part of the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory, a large user facility at PNNL. We were developing new research equipment for studying surface chemistry and surface reactions. My primary focus was looking at surface chemistry on oxide materials, and that included titanium dioxide. The goal was to understand the role of both physical and electronic structures in driving both thermal-induced and photo-induced chemical reactions. We made excellent progress and made insightful discoveries on these topics.

I was then recruited to HP based on my oxide surface chemistry work and started on a solid oxide fuel cell program where we were looking at the miniaturization of solid oxide fuel cells with the goal of replacing lithium-ion batteries. Although we were making really good technical progress on the program, the business case just wasn't there. So, we ended up switching our focus to printed electronics, roll-to-roll processing, and flexible displays. The goal with those efforts was to look at higher-performance semiconductors compared to the organic semiconductors that other companies were focusing on at the time. As part of this effort, we started a collaboration with Oregon State University. We worked on a wide range of technologies, such as low-temperature, solution-processed materials, primarily focused on oxide semiconductors and amorphous high-K dielectrics. During this time we obtained some very impressive results. But what I found most exciting was the work a group of us inside HP were focusing on. We were working on developing the next generation of amorphous oxide semiconductor materials. We started this work by doing combinatorial depositions, where we could study a wide range of compositions of these oxide materials in a short amount of time. At the same time, we were building a patent portfolio around these new material compositions. We ended up getting the foundational patent for indium gallium zinc oxide, typically called IGZO. IGZO is a material used today in cellphones, computer displays, televisions, and similar products. That was a very exciting time with a large impact in consumer electronics.

What would you say is Oregon State’s biggest strength in these programs?

One of the reasons I decided to come to Oregon State is that I saw how well people work together. It’s a very collaborative atmosphere. At other universities that I had considered in the past, I saw that faculty worked in their own silos. And very often, you'd have faculty in a department who wouldn't even talk to each other. What I found during my collaborations with Oregon State, which lasted for almost nine years, is that people liked working together, they felt comfortable discussing ideas with each other, and they worked together on building large programs. I really enjoyed the collaborative atmosphere. When I was part of the National Science Foundation - Center for Sustainable Materials Chemistry, I found that this culture of collaboration extended to other universities as well, where we worked closely with the University of Oregon and others. Often you don't see the two main research universities in a state working as closely together as we did with UO. On other projects I worked closely with Oregon Health & Science University, and these collaborations continue to expand. I really enjoy the collaborative atmosphere in the state, especially across higher education.

Can you take us along your research path at Oregon State?

Oregon State has a lot of collaborations with industry. I continued to work on the oxide semiconductors that we started developing at HP and that I helped transition to commercialization at Sharp. What we have done is focus on different applications, instead of only thin-film transistors. For example, we have used these oxide semiconductors as active elements in field effect biosensors. We published several papers related to fully transparent biosensors, and we were looking at the concept of integrating these biosensors in contact lenses. There are some properties, including high mobility and low leakage currents, that are very good for thin-film transistors and also work well for sensors. We were able to measure glucose concentrations at very low levels, uric acid as well. We were really interested in measuring glucose concentrations in human tears.

Another area of research is display technology. If you look at displays, usually it's just this piece of glass with an array of transistors, and these transistors serve only one function. Usually that's a switch, either on or off. With more advanced displays, what is really wanted was logic on the glass as well as memory. We studied using the same oxide semiconductor materials, but integrating into resistive random access memory devices. We published a couple of articles on this research, and the devices performed fairly well. That said, I don't think this direction is where companies are going right now. But it is a material that has worked well for the application and could have increased the functionality of displays while keeping costs low.

Where are things now, research-wise?

One of the big things I've focused on over the past 10 years is improving the analytical research capabilities on campus. As part of this effort, I was lead on proposals for bringing in a research instrument that does ambient pressure X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and ambient pressure scanning tunneling microscopy. These techniques allow us to characterize surfaces of materials. With ambient pressure X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, we can measure oxidation states of materials to see how stable they are under a range of environments. With ambient pressure scanning tunneling microscopy, we can image individual atoms and defects. One area we're really interested in is studying 2D materials as semiconductors. The electronics industry is planning to transition away from silicon to novel materials, and these 2D semiconductors are one path forward. Understanding defects in these 2D materials — how they affect electronic properties, doping, and stability — is critical for future applications. That is one area my group is focused on. Another area my group is studying is extreme ultraviolet photoresists. These EUV photoresists are important for companies like Intel and Micron, which use EUV steppers to make semiconductor devices at the nanoscale. Each of these EUV steppers can cost up to $500 million. Our studies are evaluating the new paradigm of using these metal-organic clusters as the photoresist, as opposed to traditional polymer resists. We are focused on understanding the mechanisms of the photoinduced processes, and how to improve the materials.

Why are you and your team so interested in metal organic clusters?

Inpria, a company in Corvallis that was founded from Oregon State research, is a world leader in developing and manufacturing these metal-organic photoresist materials. The main thing my group is studying is what happens to these materials when they are exposed to EUV radiation.  A range of chemistries take place in these photoresists, and we believe that understanding the mechanisms will allow for a path to improve the performance of the photoresists. The main thing about photoresists is there is a transition between a soluble and insoluble phase, which depends on the material being exposed to radiation. We are trying to understand how to improve the sensitivity of these materials, and how to reduce the amount of radiation to effect this transition. Ultimately, this will allow companies to produce semiconductors more quickly and efficiently, and reduce costs.

Will the next generation of chips take advantage of this particular advent in photoresist technology?

YYes, these metal-organic resists are a critical path forward to make more semiconductor devices on a chip. Of course, there will be different generations of fabs that will not need this technology, since many applications do not need nanosized devices. For example, HP has a big focus on inkjet printing and will not likely need to push the fundamental limits of how small they can make devices. Places like HP make larger devices that can drive more power, so going smaller isn’t the goal. However, smaller devices are critical for Intel, Micron, and many other semiconductor companies and foundries. Nanoscaling is a critical technology on the international semiconductor roadmap, which requires making smaller and smaller devices. Once scaling is below 10 nanometers or so, it will be necessary to use either the Inpria photoresist or one very similar to it.

That is quite an accomplishment.

Yes, it is. Actually, the genesis of this concept was Doug Keszler's research group at Oregon State. I saw some of the results while at HP and we were working jointly on other projects.  HP was not funding this project, but his group was looking at how to make these photoresists from a material that had been developed as a dielectric for our joint project. This was before anyone probably even thought about using inorganic materials as an EUV photoresist. We continued to collaborate when I started at Oregon State in the NSF - Center for Sustainable Materials Chemistry. In the CSMC we had a core group of people looking at how to make the photoresists, what the chemistries are, understanding the reactions, and how to move the technology forward. During this time Inpria worked separately on how to advance the technology. Inpria did very thorough and very important work. I am impressed with what we accomplished in the CSMC. We had a very good group, including May Nyman’s group from chemistry, Rick Garfunkel’s group from Rutgers University, Doug Keszler's group, and my group from chemical engineering. These were the main groups that were part of the nanopatterning group. We also collaborated with groups from UO, specifically Darren Johnson and Jim Hutchison.

Can you speak to the NSF-driven call for advancement in nanotechnology?

During our work with the CSMC we brought in new research equipment to assist in the research. As we were ramping down the CSMC, the NSF came up with a new program called the National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure. The University of Washington has historically been part of a very similar program with the NSF. Researchers at UW reached out to us to collaborate on this new program. They knew about the new capabilities we brought in as well as the strength of Oregon State’s research in semiconductors. They also knew that we were the only Oregon university that had a user facility with a clean room at the time. It was a natural fit. Therefore, we collaborated with UW on a proposal. We were initially awarded about $5 million, around eight years ago.

In this collaboration we are primarily focused on fabrication and characterization, making nanodevices and nanostructured materials, and measuring their properties. We also focus on mentoring, bringing up the next generation of researchers and providing the research equipment they need. We were renewed on the program about two years ago for another $5 million or so.  Our site, the Northwest Nanotechnology Infrastructure site, is part of a national program with 16 member sites across the country. We have many collaborative programs, with monthly and annual meetings, and we coordinate efforts between the sites. We've been working together on addressing many of the opportunities coming out, like the CHIPS and Science Act, and working to align the future directions of the NNCI to make the largest impact. This includes working with the NSF program managers and hopefully visualizing the changes that we would like to see in the program. We’re looking primarily at expanding and getting more investment into the various sites to make an even larger impact in nanotechnology.

Recently, there was a broad agency announcement from the NSF where they have developed a Regional Innovation Engines program. Oregon State  took the lead on submitting a proposal focused on developing and expanding the ecosystem related to semiconductors and microelectronics in the Northwest, which includes Oregon, Idaho, and Washington. I am the principal investigator on this proposal. We're hoping to hear back on the results in early 2023. Our proposal aligns well with the states’ and universities’ visions for the region’s future in semiconductors and microelectronics. The proposal includes academic institutions, like UW, Boise State University, Oregon State, and UO. Those are the main graduate research-intensive universities. We also included Oregon Institute of Technology and Portland Community College — actually, all community colleges in Oregon. Ultimately we hope all academic institutions in the Northwest will be part of the ecosystem. Also included are Idaho National Laboratory and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Both of those labs have unique facilities, capabilities, research expertise, and programs related to semiconductors. Finally, we have midsized and large semiconductor-related companies throughout the Northwest as part of the proposal.

What collaborations have been taking place in your research at Oregon State?

I think what is most exciting is companies like Intel, Micron, Microsoft, Meta, and HP all signed up to be part of the Regional Innovation Engines program. We are also working with smaller companies, like Inpria and American Semiconductor. We probably have 60 or so companies involved and are part of our proposal. Phase one is primarily for pulling the team together and planning how to best make an impact in the region. Our goal is to go after a second phase proposal in two years. The second phase would be about $80 million to $100 million over eight years. This amount of money and the collaborations it will enable will be very beneficial for the region.

What would you say will be the biggest impacts if the funding is granted?

The neat thing about the RIE proposal is that, although it is focused on semiconductors, it covers many items, including workforce development, use-inspired research, and economic development, as well as diversity, equity, and inclusion across the entire site. For the use-inspired research, we are covering nanolithography, semiconductors, memory, More Than Moore, and artificial intelligence. Each of these areas is critical for future generations of consumer products, but the combination will have an even larger impact. One area I am excited about is nanomanufacturing. This is the EUV photoresist work I mentioned earlier, and we will be continuing these efforts as part of the proposal. This is a very important area for Micron and Intel. For example, Micron and Intel buy EUV steppers from AMSL, and they're over $500 million each. Companies need multiples of these EUV steppers, so you can see how expensive it can get. The systems are so expensive that companies need to make sure that they are usable and optimized. That is where photoresists come in. These photoresists have high sensitivity and high resolution. As a result, companies can get more wafers moved through the EUV steppers, increasing production, which affects the bottom line. This is a game-changer.

So you work pretty closely with Intel?

I have worked with Intel through the Semiconductor Research Corporation and have had some smaller projects through the NNCI. Our SRC project was focused on how to improve EUV photoresists, developing methods for characterizing them, understanding the fundamentals, and applying those to practice. In the future, as part of the RIE, we hope to be able to run our chemistries through Intel equipment and to better characterize their performance. We have also done collaborative work, where Intel sent us samples to measure and we hope to expand these efforts. Companies have been using silicon and silicon-germanium since the start of the semiconductor microelectronics industry. If you visualize how these devices are made, it is called two-dimensional integration, because essentially, you are laying these materials out on a flat substrate. Moore's law, where you need to keep increasing the number of transistors on a wafer, which results in reducing the size of the transistors. At some point the transistors cannot get any smaller. For example, devices can't get smaller than an atom. So, the transition is to stack devices on top of each other, so we can fit more transistors on a wafer. This is 3D integration, and both new materials and processes are required. Initially, integration will probably be more like a hybrid, 2.5D approach. But the idea is understanding how to develop these materials, pattern them, and put them in the places where you want them, while getting device performance that's uniform across the entire wafer. This is critical, and understanding the interfacial chemistry is vital to enable this technology transition.

Can you tell us more about advancements in memory and where things are headed?

Our group has done memory research as well. Micron is a world leader in memory and has evaluated essentially every memory technology and has commercialized 3D vertical structures for memory. My group has been studying resistive random access memory, which can also be integrated into these vertical structures, while integrating other functionality is important for future technology nodes. The use-inspired research area covered in the RIE is impactful and I believe it encompasses the future of where the semiconductor industry is heading.

The other thing underlying just about everything in the research that we will be doing is artificial intelligence and machine learning. These new computational approaches include new programs that can identify what material systems make the most sense to use, what are the best architectural structures of the devices that we are creating, and how to develop processes to better understand how everything can fit together. I'm really excited about these five research areas all coming together. Combining very good experiments with very good theory is critical for the future direction of the semiconductor industry and will be an area that the team will focus on.

Given all of that, what do you see as the biggest challenges in the field?

For my personal research interests, I believe that the biggest challenges are trying to find the optimal semiconductor materials to allow the three-dimensional scaling. In my past experience in industry, I've found that a lot of time is focused on making sure that the research is scalable. I think a lot of researchers don't really worry about scalability. Rather, they believe that if they can make one transistor that works well, then someone else can worry about making tens of millions of transistors that are identical. What I’ve found is that it's so critical to have that uniformity. So, trying to find ways of controlling defects and getting uniformity across the entire wafer for these new semiconductor materials is really going to be critical for advancing them. If we can't get that under control, these three-dimensional integration structures with 2D materials just aren't going to happen.

Anything else that you're working on that you're excited about?

In my group we work on a lot of different things, where some areas are somewhat unrelated to semiconductor research. For example, we're doing research looking at single-atom catalysis, which is really understanding chemistry that can be dictated by a single atom at a surface. We are finding ways to get a single atom pinned at a specific defect at the surface of a material. This research is primarily related to catalysis, where we are working to make more efficient catalysts through a detailed understanding of surface reactions. These concepts can be directly applied to semiconductors as well. My group has expertise in surface characterization and modification, which helps us better understand reactions at surfaces. These concepts can be applied to a variety of other systems.

The Jen-Hsun and Lori Huang Collaborative Innovation Complex is projected to open in 2025. What opportunities will that open up?

I really am excited about the CIC, because it's not just an Engineering building, it’s not just a Science building, and it’s not just focused on Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences. It's meant to be collaborative between these three colleges and the rest of the university. We're going to have collaborative research working together on complex programs in the CIC. We will have a clean room and a supercomputer. We will also have modular lab space available. Early on, when the university was putting together a proposal to the donors, Brady Gibbons (associate dean for research) and I co-led a team of scientists and engineers in coming up with concepts of what the CIC would enable us to do. We had people from across Engineering, across Science, and across Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences. There were just so many good ideas that came out of these brainstorming sessions that we sent up to College of Engineering Dean Scott Ashford, and went all the way up to the provost and the president. In the end, it's exciting to see that the CIC is happening and that it's moving forward as quickly as it is. I think it's not only going to pull together researchers at the university; I can see that it will also get companies from across the state interested in collaborating. The CIC is going to be awesome, and the faculty are extremely excited. We are already talking to Intel about aspects of the cleanroom, along with HP. I think they are as excited as we are to see this building moving forward.

Fantastic. 2025 can’t come soon enough.

Also, when you asked about the CIC, there's something else that came to mind. Oregon State’s new president, Jayathi Murthy, is an engineer. She has a vision of what Oregon State can become and the impact that we can make. She's really good at meeting with industry, working with industrial partners in the state, especially in the semiconductor industry, and promoting the university as well as our faculty, staff, and students. She was a great hire, and will be able to leverage the goodwill throughout the state and help expand industry and academic research programs. Ultimately this will advance the university’s and state’s missions.

To explore collaborative opportunities, or the semiconductor program in general, get in touch with us at: semi-osu@oregonstate.edu.

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Jan. 30, 2023

HP-Oregon State collaboration yields new tech, record $514M sale

Discovery of a new class of photoresists gives rise to successful spinout Inpria, acquired by JSR in the largest-ever sale of an Oregon-grown materials company
 

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Jason Stowers and Stephen Meyers

Since the 1970s, progress in the semiconductor industry has closely followed Moore’s Law by making transistors smaller and increasing their number in an integrated circuit. However, researchers have for years predicted that this progress would eventually hit a brick wall due to advances in the photoactive inks used to print circuit boards, called photoresists, not keeping pace with improvements in photolithography tools.

Then, around 2005, Oregon State University researchers Doug Keszler, distinguished professor of chemistry and John Wager, emeritus professor of electrical and computer engineering, in partnership with Hewlett Packard researchers, created inks that transformed the performance of printed oxide and transparent electronics. These new inks produced, for the first time, thin films with atomically flat surfaces. Keszler hypothesized a new class of very high-resolution photoresists may emerge if this surface smoothness could be retained in a patterned line edge.

Keszler's graduate student Jason Stowers confirmed this hypothesis using electron-beam lithography. Oregon State helped to build a robust patent portfolio around the ensuing discoveries and inventions. Keszler subsequently met Andrew Grenville, associate director of lithography at Sematech, and together they co-founded Inpria Corp. to commercialize the technology. From the beginning, Grenville was the company's CEO. It was an audacious undertaking, as the semiconductor industry typically relies on its established supply-chain partners to make critical technology advances. A product introduction based on university research, especially one so central to the industry, is a rare event.

In time, the newly formed Inpria lined up the leading chip companies — Intel, Samsung, TSMC, JSR, ASML, and Applied Material — as strategic investors.

The Oregon Venture Fund (then known as the Oregon Angel Fund) also joined the syndicate, lending decades of valuable semiconductor industry experience from its members.

With investment secured, Inpria made a strategic decision to remain in Corvallis. Through a critical partnership with Brian Wall, associate vice president for research, innovation, and economic impact, and the Oregon State University Advantage Program, the company secured up-to-date lab space in Gilbert Hall at the university and manufacturing facilities in the Advanced Technology and Manufacturing Institute on the HP campus.

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A jug of Inpria's inorganic photoresist material
A jug of Inpria's inorganic photoresist material

The effort to transition a basic-research finding to high-volume manufacturing paid off in 2021 with the sale of Inpria to JSR Corp. for $514 million, the largest payout to date for an Oregon-grown advanced materials company. The company continues to conduct research and manufacture products in Corvallis.

Thanks to Inpria — employing many Oregon State science and engineering graduates who enable the next generation of integrated circuits — the internet will get faster, electric vehicles will benefit from advanced safety features and longer battery life, and artificial intelligence and machine learning will open new and unforeseen opportunities for society.

To explore collaborative opportunities, or the semiconductor program in general, get in touch with the program head at osu-semi@oregonstate.edu.

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Jan. 30, 2023

Four faculty win early-career awards

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Early-career investigator award winners for 2022.

Four faculty in the Oregon State University College of Engineering have received prestigious early-career investigator awards from the National Science Foundation and the Department of Energy. Houssam Abbas, Yue Cao, and Xiao Fu are the recipients of the Faculty Early Career Development, or CAREER, awards from the NSF. Kelsey Stoerzinger is the recipient of an award from DOE’s Early Career Research Program.

The grants cover a wide array of engineering projects: developing computational ethics for autonomous systems; incorporating currently overlooked “virtual” resources, such as HVAC systems or water heaters, into energy storage systems; advancing unsupervised deep representation learning, and designing and testing catalysts that facilitate the conversion of nitrate into ammonia more efficiently and sustainably than current methods.

“These early career awards demonstrate the importance of our research and how the College of Engineering continues to innovate and lead in so many fields,” said Scott Ashford, Kearney Dean of Engineering. “On a personal note, I couldn’t be happier for these faculty members.”

Increasingly, autonomous systems — such as self-driving cars, unpiloted aerial vehicles, and assistive robots in medical facilities — interact with people on a daily basis. Houssam Abbas, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, will use his five-year, nearly $500,000 NSF CAREER award to further develop computational ethics as an engineering and scientific discipline to be used in the design of such systems.

For example, a self-driving car may encounter a situation where it needs to make an ethically laden decision: Given no other choice, does it run into a wall and potentially injure its passengers, or run into a pedestrian? While this question cannot be resolved with purely technical solutions, there is an urgent need for an engineering process to model, verify, and analyze autonomous systems’ behaviors in such situations.

Abbas aims to develop engineering tools to allow system designers to formalize, program, and verify the implementation of ethical principles.

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A picture of Houssam Abbas.
Houssam Abbas wants autonomous systems, like self-driving cars, to make ethical choices when faced with difficult decisions.

Traditional energy storage systems encompass what Yue Cao, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, calls “real” storage, which includes batteries, supercapacitors, and fuel cells. He plans to use his five-year, $500,000 NSF CAREER award to figure out ways to also incorporate currently overlooked “virtual” resources, such as HVAC systems or water heaters.

“I call those systems ‘virtual,’ because storing energy is not their primary purpose, but they consume electricity and are tied to the grid or other energy resources,” Cao said.

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A picture of Yue Cao.
Yue Cao’s work could lead to widespread use of nontraditional, hybrid energy storage systems.

The purpose of Cao’s research will be to create a universal equivalent circuit for multiple energy storage systems that are controlled by connected power electronics. Cao will then develop a design approach to optimally size the hybrid energy storage systems and increase their life and reliability. By dynamically regulating virtual energy mass, this new approach aims to modulate energy usage from the grid.

“For example, if I have rooftop solar panels on my house, and it’s a sunny day and the air conditioner is on, and in the next minute a cloud blocks the sun, solar power will be reduced,” Cao said. “Current systems would use power from the grid to keep the air conditioner running. With an integrated energy system, however, the power used by the air conditioner, or the virtual resource, could be adjusted temporarily to match the reduced power of the solar panels, without my noticing a difference in temperature.”

Cao is already working on research projects that involve energy storage problems including fast charging stations for heavy-duty trucks on rural highways, electrification of locomotives, and wave energy.

Xiao Fu, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering and artificial intelligence, will use his five-year, $500,000 NSF CAREER award to develop a suite of nonlinear factor analysis tools and contribute to a deeper understanding of unsupervised machine learning and sensing systems.

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A picture of Xiao Fu.
Xiao Fu plans to gain a deeper understanding of unsupervised machine learning and sensing systems.

Factor analysis tools are cornerstones of many sensing and learning applications, such as document analytics, hyperspectral imaging, brain signal processing, and representation learning. They’re designed to detect meaningful information hidden in large data sets, such as prominent topics within a large collection of documents.

However, many classic factor analysis models can be thwarted by phenomena known as nonlinear distortions, which frequently cause inaccurate results. To address the problem, Fu must first establish a deeper theoretical understanding of the so-called nonlinear factor analysis models, which are not well understood.

One of his goals is to use nonlinear factor analysis to understand and advance unsupervised deep representation learning, which is considered a critical tool to alleviate the high demand for labeled data in modern AI systems.

Supervised machine learning algorithms learn through exposure to labeled inputs that correspond with specific outputs. But the training process can be costly and time intensive, because reliable data annotation must be done by experienced workers.

Fu hopes to “reverse engineer” the data generating/acquisition process, so that machine learning and sensing algorithms can recognize and categorize unlabeled data — images, for instance — without being trained, by identifying and interpreting essential factors hidden within the data.

Kelsey Stoerzinger, assistant professor of chemical engineering, plans to use her five-year, $750,000 early career award from the DOE to develop a deeper understanding of electrochemical processes used to convert nitrate into ammonia, and to design and test catalysts that target this reaction.

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Kelsey Stoerzinger with some students.
Kelsey Stoerzinger with former students Prajwal Adiga and Cindy Wong. Her work could lead to sustainable production of ammonia, one of the world’s most important chemicals.

Ammonia is among the most widely used chemicals in the world. But industrial-scale ammonia production relies on the Haber-Bosch process, in which hydrogen and nitrogen are combined at high temperatures and pressures. The practice requires enormous amounts of energy and produces huge volumes of carbon dioxide.

Meanwhile, nitrate from untreated wastewater and agricultural runoff overwhelms streams, rivers, and groundwater in many areas of the country. Ingesting excessive nitrate has been linked to a number of serious health risks in humans, while an overabundance in aquatic ecosystems can devastate plant and animal life.

Stoerzinger, who won an early career award from the National Science Foundation in 2021, will investigate an electrochemical option for ammonia synthesis in which an electric current is passed through a device containing nitrate-contaminated water. “We want to take this waste nitrate and transform it into a usable form, ammonia, and we’ll do that by applying electricity from renewable energy sources,” she said.

However, widespread implementation of an electrochemical approach will be feasible only with catalysts that select for, or favor, the reaction that produces ammonia rather than a competing reaction that produces hydrogen from the water molecules. Competing reactions can occur when the same starting materials combine to create undesired products.

Stoerzinger’s goal is to identify effective catalytic materials that result in high yields of ammonia. She intends to focus on materials made from abundant elements, like nickel, iron, and cobalt, because precious metal catalysts, while potentially useful, are too expensive for large-scale production.

“We want to find sustainable solutions that allow us to recycle nitrate by upgrading it to something valuable,” Stoerzinger said. “Developing the most selective and efficient catalysts is the linchpin that will allow us to move the technology forward.”

Sept. 20, 2022

Student envisions AI for safer skies, takes home prize

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Two people using laptops.

Air travel can be made safer with artificial intelligence guarding against human error. That’s the vision of Andrew Dassonville, an engineering senior at Oregon State University, who recently took second place in a national airport design competition.  

Human error is the leading cause of commercial airline crashes and general aviation accidents, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. Dassonville, who studies computer science and robotics, zeroed in on radio communications as one source of human error where AI can provide a critical safety check.

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A picture of Andrew Dassonville.

Dassonville was awarded second place in the runway safety category at the 2022 ACRP University Design Competition, which challenges students to create innovative solutions for issues facing airports and the National Airspace System. The competition is sponsored by the Airport Cooperative Research Program, part of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Transportation Research Board.

In Dassonville’s design, an artificial intelligence-based system constantly “listens in” on radio exchanges between pilots and air traffic controllers, looking for discrepancies in communication, such as readback errors. Suppose, for example, a controller instructs aircraft ABC to climb and maintain 8,000 feet, but the pilot reads back 9,000 feet. The eavesdropping AI would catch the error and avert potential disaster.

“This system is capable of identifying that discrepancy and would alert the controller that the

aircraft might not be doing what they’re expecting,” Dassonville said.

Dassonville, an avid pilot who discovered his passion for flying though the Oregon State Flying Club, saw the competition as a perfect overlap of his interests in aviation and computer science.

“As a pilot, safety is always on your mind, and you’re taking on some risk whenever you take off,” Dassonville said. “Being able to use my skills that I’ve learned at Oregon State through computer science in order to help mitigate risks in aviation is pretty cool.”

Kiri Wagstaff, associate research professor of computer science at Oregon State, advised Dassonville on the project.

“Andrew is an outstanding student and pilot,” Wagstaff said. “As a pilot myself, I’m very excited about Andrew’s concept, and I have thoroughly enjoyed discussing AI, flying adventures, and flight training with him.”

After graduating, Dassonville plans on a career that involves aviation.

“I’d love a career that combines computer science, robotics, and aviation,” he said. “It could be something that involves self-flying planes, autopilot technologies, or aviation instruments.”

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crater lake
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A picture of the beach.
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A picture of some mountains.

Some of the reasons Andrew Dassonville loves being a pilot.

Sept. 19, 2022

Temes honored for lifetime achievement

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Gabor Temes and his wife Ibi

Gabor Temes, professor of electrical and computer engineering at Oregon State University, received the IEEE International Circuits and Systems Society’s Lifetime Achievement Award for his “contributions to delta-sigma converters, analog filters and signal processing, and engineering education.”

His work has improved technologies like cellphones and medical devices, and his mentorship of more than 100 students has multiplied the impact of his work.

Among his many awards, Temes received the nation’s highest professional distinction for engineers in 2015, when he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering. He was also named a fellow of the National Academy of Inventors in 2020.

Temes earned his undergraduate degrees at the Technical University and Eotvos University in Budapest, Hungary, from 1948 to 1956, and his Ph.D. in electrical engineering from the University of Ottawa, Canada, in 1961.

Prior to arriving at Oregon State in 1990, he held academic positions at the Technical University of Budapest, Stanford University, and UCLA. He also worked in industry at Northern Electric R&D Laboratories (now Bell-Northern Research) and Ampex Corp.

“Any achievements of mine are largely thanks to the excellence of my students and the support I received from my school and industry over many years,” Temes said upon receiving the award at the IEEE International Symposium on Circuits and Systems.

Learn more about Temes in “An Interview with Professor Gabor C. Temes” in the IEEE Circuits and Systems Magazine.

July 25, 2022
Associated Researcher

Breaking free, with a CS degree

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Jeffrey Shu, a postbaccalaureate computer science student at Oregon State University.

Jeffrey Chu, a postbaccalaureate computer science student at Oregon State University, had a perfectly fine career as an attorney. After earning a law degree in 2016 from the University of Texas at Austin, Chu worked first as a felony prosecutor, then as a civil litigator.

He liked his job but came to realize that it wasn’t his passion.

Outside the courtroom, Chu’s time was occupied not only with preparing his cases, but also with a ton of monotonous data entry tasks.

“The worst was tracking billing hours,” he said. “I had to keep track of what I was doing every six minutes.”

Chu, who lives in Houston, was working every weekend and didn’t get many days off. In order to make better use of his time, he decided to teach himself to automate some of the mundane tasks. That’s when he fell in love with programming.

Around the same time, one of Chu’s friends completed a six-month coding boot camp and told him about job offers he had received, which motivated Chu even more to make a career switch. Though he could have chosen to attend a boot camp, Chu researched his options and decided he needed a computer science degree.

“I thought the best opportunity for me was to pursue a CS degree, to get a strong foundation and give myself more time to absorb the concepts,” he said.

The degree and the foundation, Chu believed, would help him develop a career as a software engineer, not just a coder. He also realized that a computer science program would give him the opportunity to pursue internships, which would in turn give him an advantage in obtaining a full-time job.

Making an informed decision

Chu dove in to researching online computer science programs.

“One thing you learn in law school is the ability to look for things and do it efficiently,” he said. “So I was pretty confident in my ability to make an informed decision after I did all my research.”

Chu liked Oregon State’s program because he wouldn’t have to take, or retake, core curriculum classes. He could dive in to computer science classes right away. He also perused LinkedIn and found that Oregon State alumni had jobs everywhere: big tech companies, small companies, and startups.

What really convinced him to choose Oregon State was the online community he found in the student-led Slack channel, where anyone can ask questions and many will share their perspectives. Students and alumni constantly interact over a wide range of topics — including classes, interviews, career choices, and professional development opportunities.

“There were great reviews about the program there,” Chu said. “And people were so helpful, building each other up and giving advice. Other programs I looked at didn’t have that sense of community.”

A funny thing happened on the way to a degree

Though Chu quit his job as an attorney to become a full-time student in 2020, he landed a full-time cybersecurity job in 2021, while still pursuing his computer science degree. Chu thought cybersecurity would be an interesting path, and a friend connected him with another friend who worked in the field, who ultimately offered him a job.

Chu has since decided that cybersecurity isn’t the field for him. He anticipates graduating in December 2022, two years after beginning the program. In the meantime, he recently finished an internship at Amazon in Washington, D.C., and is currently on a second internship at Ford in Dearborn, Michigan.

“I’m the type of person who just likes to try multiple things and see what sticks,” he said.

July 12, 2022

Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Students Celebrate Their Graduation

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A plant on a table beside an open laptop displaying code.

Students in the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, along with their family and friends, commemorated their graduation during the school’s graduation celebration on June 10, 2022.

“Our last in-person celebration was in 2019, so it was great to see how happy everyone was to watch the students walk across the stage and be recognized for their achievements,” said Gaulke Professor and School Head Tom Weller.

Oregon State University alumna Nadia Payet, who earned a Ph.D. in computer science in 2011 and is the Senior Engineering Manager for Navigation on Google Maps, shared words of wisdom for the graduates.

After losing her younger sister to cancer in 2017, Payet changed her outlook on life and offered three lessons:

Figure out what you want. It’s not what your parents or society wants for you. After her sister died, Payet shifted her focus from solely building a career to building more meaningful relationships. “I still love the successful career,” she said. “Because I listen more carefully now, I’m just a more human leader; someone who truly cares and puts her people first.”

Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today. She urged the graduates to pretend they don’t have all the time in the world to get things done. “I remind myself that we don’t have forever, so let’s make today count,” Payet said.

Lead with empathy and kindness. “Leadership is taking care of yourself, and empowering others to do the same,” she said, and advised the audience to practice gratitude as a path toward leading with empathy and kindness.

The graduation celebration also recognized faculty, staff, and students with awards.

Outstanding Staff Member of the Year
Awarded to Calvin Hughes, assistant director for graduate programs, this honor is given to an individual who goes above and beyond their duties to help students. They always have an open door for questions, even with work sprawled across their desk.

Innovative Teaching Award
This award is presented to a faculty member who brings a new edge to the classroom. These individuals make learning fun and help enhance students’ understanding of the material through new techniques. Instructor Rob Hess received the award for computer science. Professor David Allstot and Senior Instructor Roger Traylor both received the award for electrical and computer engineering.

Faculty of the Year
Computer science professor Mike Bailey received this award which is given to a faculty member who inspires students both inside the classroom and out. The passion and pride they take in their teaching and their subject matter is evident in everything they do.

Sophomore of the Year
Julian Henry was the recipient of this award from Eta Kappa Nu, the honor society for electrical and computer engineering students.

Undergraduate Learning Assistants of the Year
Computer science students James Taylor and Andrew Kamand took home these honors. Taylor, who was among the 2022 graduates, was a learning assistant for multiple classes. Kamand, an online postbaccalaureate student in computer science, served as a learning assistant for an Introduction to Databases course.

EECS Outstanding Dissertation Award
Shashini De Silva, a doctoral student in electrical and computer engineering, received this award for her thesis, “Secure Data Analytics under Data Integrity Attacks.” De Silva was advised by Assistant Professor Jinsub Kim.

Robert Short Graduate Teaching Assistant of the Year
This award, established in honor of Robert Short, was a professor of electrical engineering and the founding chairman of the computer science department, to encourage students to consider a career in academia. Shane Allen, a master’s degree student in electrical and computer engineering, was the recipient of the award.

July 8, 2022

Security Club caps off winning year with strong entry in global competition

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OSU Security Club members Jack Wright, Otso Barron, Brandon Ellis, Lucas Ball, Gabriel Kulp, Lyell Read, Casey Colley, Michael Carris Jr., and Robert Detjens celebrate a win after a cybersecurity competition.

OSU Security Club members (L-R) Jack Wright, Otso Barron, Brandon Ellis, Lucas Ball, Gabriel Kulp, Lyell Read, Casey Colley, Michael Carris Jr., and Robert Detjens celebrate a win after a cybersecurity competition. Photos courtesy of the OSU Security Club.

Students involved in the Oregon State University Security Club have won or placed near the top in several computer security competitions over the past year, most recently qualifying for DEF CON 30 CTF. Oregon State’s team ranked 15th out of 469 teams around the globe in preliminaries for the capture the flag-style information security competition.

The club, known informally as OSUSEC, participates in many competitions geared specifically toward college students. But the competition at DEF CON CTF will include industry professionals, researchers, national and international security professionals, and other hackers. One of the world’s most prestigious capture the flag competitions, DEF CON is scheduled to take place in August 2022.

In addition, the team achieved the following results this year:

Yeongjin Jang, assistant professor of computer science and cybersecurity researcher, serves as the club’s faculty advisor. He notes that while the competitions are fun for the students, they’re also helping them build valuable, real-world skills.

“The contests mimic realistic environments, so the students are gaining experience that is directly transferable to the types of hacking that help keep computer systems safe for everyone,” he said.

OSUSEC participates in two types of competitions: capture the flag, or CTF, and cyber defense competitions, also known as CDCs.

Capture the flag competitions

Capture the flag competitions usually consist of 30-70 challenges of varying types that can be solved by anyone on a team. The challenges generally fall into the categories of binary exploitation (hacking a program), reverse engineering (understanding how a program works), cryptography (finding a weakness in a cryptographic scheme in order to break it), steganography (finding hidden data or images), open source intelligence (using the internet to solve problems), and web exploitation (finding security holes in a website).

Much of the club’s success is due to their preparation for competitions in weekly training sessions.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the club’s then-president created an in-house version of capture the flag as a way for club members to stay active and to keep up their skills. The in-house CTF lets novice students hone their skills while more experienced students share their knowledge by mentoring others.

“People who might be new to the field can come in and get assigned to a small team of three or four with a coach and they’re given a typical CTF challenge,” said Lyell Read, president of the club. “It’s a great way to learn CTF because it’s a small, internal game and it’s not scary because you’re not on a big stage playing against all the other teams in the world.”

OSU Security Club practice session

Assistant Professor Jang participated in competitions as a student at Georgia Tech and the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, where his teams advanced to the final round of DEF CON CTF eight times, winning the contest in 2015 and 2018. He enjoys passing on his knowledge to the students.

“I have been at DEF CON CTF many times, but OSUSEC qualifying for the competition is an even better feeling than when I won,” he said.

Jang also teaches the basics of hacking computer systems in his Cyber Attacks and Defense course at Oregon State. “Most of the CTF team members start learning about hacking in this class,” he said.

Cyber defense competitions

In CDCs, teams are housed on site and are not allowed to leave for the duration of the competition, which is usually one weekend.

“We’re cut off from the outside world and have to defend a set of machines against real attackers,” Read said. “We have to do the tasks to keep our system safe, just as people working in IT security in the real world do.”

“I always say a CDC is a group of college students stuck in a room together for eight hours, slowly going insane, and it’s wonderful,” said Brandon Ellis, a graduate student in computer science.

Most often the competitions involve keeping some critical infrastructure — such as an industrial control system (water tower, hydroelectric turbine, etc.) or e-commerce site — online and safe against outside attacks.

“The reason CDCs exist is that they’re very good at teaching people real IT security skills in a gamified environment,” Read said. “It’s much more fun than reading a textbook. We’re gaining hands-on experience in a safe manner.”

During the National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition, where the Oregon State team took fifth place in the nation, the Linux team was able to catch and correctly analyze custom-written malware that had never been seen anywhere else in the world. In addition, the Windows team was able to keep the attackers out of their domain controller and DNS system.

“We were able to keep our system up 100% of the time during the competition, which is quite challenging,” said Ellis, one of the individuals responsible for this feat.

“A 100% uptime during a national competition is pretty much unheard of for a first-time team,” Read said. “There are skilled professionals that we’re competing against whose goal is to disable the machines, so that’s a great accomplishment.”

Read, Ellis, and Jang all emphasized that the club’s success is not only because students learn new skills, but because they all enjoy sharing their knowledge.

“People have specific areas of cybersecurity that they’re particularly interested in,” Ellis said. “Our industry can suffer from people being elitist and stingy about their knowledge, but everyone in our club is very good about sharing things they know, and some will bend over backward to share that knowledge with new up and comers.”

Welcoming online students

The COVID-19 pandemic forced the club, like everyone else, to operate remotely. But this gave OSUSEC the opportunity to include Oregon State’s online students to easily participate in the club’s activities, including the CTF practice sessions and competitions.

They continue to involve online students as much as possible today, even though classes and other activities have returned to in-person settings. “We stream all the meetings we can to our Discord server,” Read said.

Remote students can easily participate in CTF competitions, since they are held online, and they may also participate in CDCs, if they can travel to the event venues.

Bright future

The competitions are typically sponsored by companies interested in hiring the best cybersecurity talent. After the NCCDC, students were invited to attend a networking event with sponsors, which included defense contractors and the Central Intelligence Agency.

“We had people interviewing with companies and agencies right after the networking event,” Ellis said.

“It was 10 teams, eight people on each team at the event. That’s the 80 best cyber defenders in the country who have applied their effort to NCCDC and I think that our team definitely represents that,” Read said. “And we’re glad to represent Oregon State this way.”

July 7, 2022
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