Robert Pearson Headshot

Robert Pearson

Associate Professor

Department of Electrical and Microelectronic Engineering
Kate Gleason College of Engineering

585-475-2923
Office Location

Robert Pearson

Associate Professor

Department of Electrical and Microelectronic Engineering
Kate Gleason College of Engineering

Education

BS, MS, Rochester Institute of Technology; Ph.D., State University of New York at Buffalo

Bio

Dr. Robert Pearson received his BS and MS in electrical engineering from RIT and his Ph.D from SUNY Buffalo. After graduation he worked in the semiconductor industry before returning to teach at RIT as the first faculty member hired by the Microelectronic Engineering program. After helping to establish the RIT Microelectronic Engineering program he left RIT to be a founding faculty member of the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Engineering in 1997 and supervise the start-up of their new clean-room and microelectronics program. He returned to RIT in 2003 and in 2008 he became the Microelectronic Engineering program director. He teaches VLSI design, semiconductor processing, semiconductor devices, memory systems and electronics.

His research interests include semiconductor processing (devices) and micro-electro-mechanical systems design, simulation, fabrication and testing. He is a senior member of the IEEE and a life member of the Electron Devices Society and Eta Kappa Nu. He is a member of the University Government Industry Microelectronics Symposium steering committee and a member of the SEMI Advanced Semiconductor Manufacturing Conference Technical Committee.

Website: http://people.rit.edu/~repemc/

Selected recent publications and presentations

Pearson, Robert, “History of the University Government Industry Microelectronics Symposium”, 19th University Government Industry Micro/Nanoelectronics Symposium, July 2012, Berkeley CA.

Pearson, Robert; “On the Co-Evolution of Microelectronic Engineering Laboratories and Education at RIT”, 19th University Government Industry Micro/Nanoelectronics Symposium”, July 2012, Berkeley CA.

Pearson, Robert, Hirschman, Karl and Manley, Robert; “Process Model Verification for Dopant Segregation and Oxidation Enhanced Diffusion”, 17th University Government Industry Microelectronics Symposium, Louisville, Kentucky, July 2008.

Pearson, Robert; Fuller, Lynn and Puchades, Ivan; “MEMS Fabrication Course for Pressure Sensors, Flow Sensors, Fluidic Channels and Micro-Pumps”, 17th University Government Industry Microelectronics Symposium, Louisville, Kentucky, July 2008

585-475-2923

Select Scholarship

Published Article
Kurinec, Santosh, Michael A. Jackson, Davide Marriotti, Surendra Gupta, Sean Rommel, Dale Ewbank, Karl Hirschman, Robert Pearson,and Lynn Fuller. “Microelectronic Engineering Education for Emerging Technologies.” ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in EducationConference, 27-30 Oct. 2010. T3J-1-T3J-6. Web. É  Ëœ

Currently Teaching

MCEE-601
3 Credits
This course introduces the beginning graduate student to the fabrication of solid-state devices and integrated circuits. The course presents an introduction to basic electronic components and devices, lay outs, unit processes common to all IC technologies such as substrate preparation, oxidation, diffusion and ion implantation. The course will focus on basic silicon processing. The students will be introduced to process modeling using a simulation tool such as SUPREM. The lab consists of conducting a basic metal gate PMOS process in the RIT clean room facility to fabricate and test a PMOS integrated circuit test ship. Laboratory work also provides an introduction to basic IC fabrication processes and safety.
MCEE-502
3 Credits
This is an advanced level course in Integrated Circuit Devices and process technology. A detailed study of processing modules in modern semiconductor fabrication sequences will be done through simulation. Device engineering challenges such as shallow-junction formation, fin FETs, ultra-thin gate dielectrics, and replacement metal gates are covered. Particular emphasis will be placed on non-equilibrium effects. Silvaco Athena and Atlas will be used extensively for process simulation.
MCEE-602
3 Credits
This is an advanced level course in Integrated Circuit Devices and process technology. A detailed study of processing modules in modern semiconductor fabrication sequences will be done through simulation. Device engineering challenges such as shallow-junction formation, fin FETs, ultra-thin gate dielectrics, and replacement metal gates are covered. Particular emphasis will be placed on non-equilibrium effects. Silvaco Athena and Atlas will be used extensively for process simulation. Graduate paper required.
MCEE-550
4 Credits
A laboratory course in which students manufacture and test CMOS integrated circuits. Topics include design of individual process operations and their integration into a complete manufacturing sequence. Students are introduced to work in process tracking, ion implantation, oxidation, diffusion, plasma etch, LPCVD, and photolithography. Student learn VLSI design fundamentals of circuit simulation and layout. Analog and Digital CMOS devices are made and tested. This course is organized around multidisciplinary teams that address the management, engineering and operation of the student run CMOS factory.
MCEE-495
3 Credits
A capstone design experience for microelectronic engineering senior students. Students propose a project related to microelectronic process, device, component or system design, to meet desired specifications within realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability. The students plan a timetable and write a formal proposal. The proposal is evaluated on the basis of intellectual merit, sound technical/research plan, and feasibility. The proposed work is carried through in the sequel course, Senior Design Project II (MCEE-496). Each student is required to make a presentation of the proposal.
MCEE-201
3 Credits
An introduction to the basics of integrated circuit fabrication. The electronic properties of semiconductor materials and basic device structures are discussed, along with fabrication topics including photolithography diffusion and oxidation, ion implantation, and metallization. The laboratory uses a four-level metal gate PMOS process to fabricate an IC chip and provide experience in device design - and layout (CAD), process design, in-process characterization and device testing. Students will understand the basic interaction between process design, device design and device layout.
MCEE-732
3 Credits
This course focuses on CMOS manufacturing. Topics include CMOS process technology, work in progress tracking, CMOS calculations, process technology, long channel and short channel MOSFET, isolation technologies, back-end processing and packaging. Associated is a lab for on-campus section (01) and a graduate paper/case study for distance learning section (90). The laboratory for this course is the student-run factory. Topics include Lot tracking, query processing, data collection, lot history, cycle time, turns, CPK and statistical process control, measuring factory performance, factory modeling and scheduling, cycle time management, cost of ownership, defect reduction and yield enhancement, reliability, process modeling and RIT's advanced CMOS process. Silicon wafers are processed through an entire CMOS process and tested. Students design unit processes and integrate them into a complete process. Students evaluate the process steps with calculations, simulations and lot history, and test completed devices.
MCEE-496
3 Credits
A capstone design experience for microelectronic engineering senior students. In this course, students conduct a hands-on implementation of the projects proposed in the previous course, Senior Design Project I. Technical presentations of the results, including a talk and a poster, are required at the annual conference on microelectronic engineering organized by the program. A written paper in IEEE format is required and is included in the conference journal.

In the News

  • August 18, 2021

    semiconductor computer chip.

    Podcast: The Supply Chain Struggles to Send Semiconductors 

    Intersections: The RIT Podcast, Ep. 51: Complex manufacturing processes of semiconductors and growing demands along the global supply chain for computer chips is impacting numerous industries. Robert Pearson, professor of microelectronic engineering, and Steven Carnovale, assistant professor of supply chain management, discuss how the semiconductor supply chain has been disrupted.