TSMC CTO Hu to rejoin academiaTAIPEI, Taiwan The chief technologist at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. will resign next month to return to the world of academia.
Chen-ming Hu, a sort of superstar in the engineering world, intends to leave his post on July 20, the company said, according to a prior agreement made when he first came to the company three years ago.
Hu left the University of California at Berkeley in early 2001 to be TSMC's first chief technology officer. He immediately set about the task of devising ways to overcome daunting obstacles at the 65 nanometer node and beyond, often suggesting the FinFET as a possible solution to improved transistor performance.
Hu helped develop the FinFET, a novel transistor structure with a fin-like semiconductor channel raised vertically out of the silicon surface of an IC, and he believes it will help lengthen the life of Moore's Law by scaling silicon down to at least 10-nanometer gate lengths.
He is also widely known for leading the development of the BSIM transistor model for simulating CMOS circuits. His work on the model, which has become an industry standard, was recognized by IEEE in 2002 with the Solid State Circuits Award. He has also received the DARPA Most Significant Technological Accomplishment Award for his work on the FinFET.
As TSMC CTO, he leaves a deep impact through the strategic planning and execution of our most advanced technologies and TSMC's patent portfolio strategy and management, said F.C. Tseng, TSMC's deputy CEO. "We're grateful for Dr. Hu's great contributions and regret his departure."
"I took great pleasure in working with the strong management team and the excellent technical colleagues of all ranks. Although I'll return to academic pursuits, I will always be proud of having been a part of TSMC," Hu said in a statement.
Originally, Hu had said he would only stay at TSMC for about three years because he still felt a strong connection to the teaching community. He will return to his former position at UC Berkeley, where he has held the Chancellor's Professor Chair. The work of his office will be taken up by TSMC's main R&D division, headed up by TSMC veteran Shang-yi Chiang.