Public Release: 

University of Akron, Ocius Technologies team receive $1.5 million award from DARPA

Goal to build a new type of computer that can help speed up simulation of fusion reactors

University of Akron

Ocius Technologies LLC and the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at The University of Akron announce the receipt of a $1.5 million Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase II award in collaboration with Case Western Reserve University (CWRU).

This award will fund research over a three-year period that began on Sept. 1, 2017, and will explore how computationally intensive engineering and physics problems can be more rapidly solved using new types of analog computers. Designing and implementing high-speed analog computers based on RF/mm-wave circuits would greatly accelerate the solution of linear and non-linear partial differential equations arising in applications related to electromagnetics, magnetohydrodynamics, and fluid mechanics.

This Phase II award follows a successful Phase I research effort using resources from Ocius Technologies and The University of Akron. Over 16 months, the team successfully researched analog co-processors with a focus on simulation and design.

Located in Akron, Ohio, both Ocius Technologies and The University of Akron Research Foundation (UARF) provided entrepreneurial support to the research headed by Drs. Arjuna Madanayake and S.I. Hariharan, both of The University of Akron. Ph.D student Nilan Udayanga also supported this effort and will continue on Phase II. Joining the team from Case Western Reserve University will be Dr. Soumyajit Mandal.

"Ocius Technologies is pleased to be partnered with leading researchers in the field of analog circuit design," said Dr. Dale H. Mugler, CTO of Ocius Technologies. "This research has the ability to drive revolutionary processes into how simulations and complex models are calculated today, leading to better, faster, and safer systems and products."

"As noted on their website, 'DARPA explicitly reaches for transformational change instead of incremental advances' by funding projects that have the potential for disruptive advancements," noted Steve Nichols, CEO of Ocius Technologies. "This team is driving new approaches to tackle hard physics simulations not easily achievable using current technologies. In addition to helping the government adopt these new methods, Ocius is looking for commercial partners that need increased speed in their complex product development."

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