UIT University

Micro Electronics Research Lab (MERL)

Introduction

Welcome!

MERL-UITU stands at the forefront of chip design education, fostering a dynamic environment where innovation converges with academic excellence. Recognizing the transformative power of chip technology, we have partnered with UIT to empower the next generation of engineers.

Following the groundbreaking memorandum of understanding signed in December 2018, MERL-UITU has become a pioneer in open-source chip design education across Pakistan.  This initiative extends to undergraduate students, providing them with a pathway to success in this ever-evolving field.

Our globally recognized curriculum, meticulously crafted by renowned academic leaders, leverages best-in-class resources. This ensures students acquire the most cutting-edge chip design techniques, equipping them with the skills to become future leaders in the industry.

More than just education, MERL-UITU offers an enriching journey of discovery and innovation. Here, you’ll unlock the limitless possibilities of chip design and become a key player in shaping the future of technology.

Open-Source Education

At UIT University’s Micro Electronics Research Lab (MERL), we are dedicated to developing coursework that equips students with the skills needed to thrive in large open-source software communities. Our summer program offers intensive courses where students gain hands-on experience and benefit from exceptional mentorship opportunities provided by both academic experts and industry leaders. These experiences often lead our students to become prominent open-source contributors. In addition, MERL organizes guest lectures on open-source topics and hosts an annual workshop series dedicated to open-source software.

Our Strength

Our academic leadership has created a system, which leverages best in class sources for learning state of the art Chip Designing techniques Our track record of imparting Chip Designing has been Steller and globally lauded.

Achievements

Pakistan’s Only Organization Selected as a Mentor Organization in Google Summer of Code

MERL-UITU is honored to be recognized as Pakistan’s sole organization selected for the 2024 Google Summer of Code (GSoC). This achievement highlights our dedication to fostering innovation and collaboration within the open-source community. By participating as a GSoC Mentor Organization, MERL-UITU will connect talented students from around the world with leading mentors in the field, empowering the next generation of open-source pioneers. This opportunity not only enhances our global outreach but also reinforces our commitment to shaping the future of technology through open-source development.

MERL-UITU’s Team Lead Dr. Ali Ahmed invited to Pakistan Semiconductor Summit

Our MERL-UITU team lead, Dr. Ali Ahmed, was recently invited to the Pakistan Semiconductor Summit in Islamabad, sponsored by GSME and led by Farhat Jahangir. Dr. Ahmed participated in the panel on “Building the Talent Pool,” where he highlighted the success of MERL-UITU in nurturing talent in Karachi. He discussed how our graduates are actively contributing to leading companies like Xcelerium and DreamBig Semiconductor Inc., based at NED University. He also emphasized the role of Dr. Syed Roomi Naqvi’s leadership and Dr. Farhan Ahmed Karim’s teamwork in achieving our goals. Dr. Ahmed proudly shared that our graduates have secured prestigious positions at top international tech organizations and are pursuing fully funded PhDs at renowned universities. He also mentioned our significant achievements, including 24 paid international scholarships from Google Summer of Code and The Linux Foundation mentorship programs.

Merl Alumni Success

Job Opportunities Secured by MERL-UITU Students

At MERL-UITU, opportunities abound for our graduates, both on the national and international stage. Internationally, our alumni are making waves, securing sought-after positions at esteemed institutions such as Imagination Technologies, onsemi, Semidynamics, Intensivate, and the Barcelona Supercomputing Center. Nationally, they are leading innovation at homegrown companies like Xcelerium and DreamBig Semiconductor Inc., located at NED University. These achievements underscore the caliber of education and industry connections nurtured at MERL-UITU.

Scholarships

Fully-Funded International Masters & PhD Scholarships

Our students at MERL-UITU have consistently excelled, securing fully funded international scholarships for both master’s and PhD programs. These prestigious awards include fully funded master’s to PhD scholarships at world-renowned institutions such as the University of California, Santa Cruz, University of Arkansas, and Sungkyunkwan University. We, at UITU and MERL, take immense pride in their successes and their contributions to the global academic and research community.

Mentorships

Google Summer of Code Contributors

Our MERL-UITU team lead, Dr. Ali Ahmed, was recently invited to the Pakistan Semiconductor Summit in Islamabad, sponsored by GSME and led by Farhat Jahangir. Dr. Ahmed participated in the panel on “Building the Talent Pool,” where he highlighted the success of MERL-UITU in nurturing talent in Karachi. He discussed how our graduates are actively contributing to leading companies like Xcelerium and DreamBig Semiconductor Inc., based at NED University. He also emphasized the role of Dr. Syed Roomi Naqvi’s leadership and Dr. Farhan Ahmed Karim’s teamwork in achieving our goals. Dr. Ahmed proudly shared that our graduates have secured prestigious positions at top international tech organizations and are pursuing fully funded PhDs at renowned universities. He also mentioned our significant achievements, including 24 paid international scholarships from Google Summer of Code and The Linux Foundation mentorship programs.

LFX Mentorship Contributors

Several outstanding students have recently secured mentorship opportunities through the esteemed LFX Mentorships program. This remarkable achievement underscores the commitment to providing unparalleled opportunities for students’ growth and development. The LFX Mentorships program offers invaluable guidance and support from industry experts, empowering students to further hone their skills and expertise in their respective research field.

Events

MERL-UITU hosted Events and Training Sessions for celebrating success of our interns and to familiarize students in state of the art technologies

Tapeouts

MERL-UITU takes immense pride in the groundbreaking achievements of its students, who have spearheaded a series of remarkable tapeouts. These accomplishments include the development of the first Verilog-based microprocessor in Pakistan, as well as the design and fabrication of an innovative System on a Chip (SoC) for Google-sponsored Open MPW shuttles. Notably, the SoC features a 3-stage version of the Buraq Core RV32IMC, incorporating essential options like IRQ, Multiply, Divide, and a compressed ISA for embedded applications. Collaborating with Efabless and SkyWater, these projects mark a significant milestone as they pave the way for future RISC-V-based SoCs. Additionally, MERL-UITU proudly celebrates the successful tapeouts of other cutting-edge projects, such as the CHISEL-based “Ibtida” chip, Azadi SoC, and the SoC-Now.

Research Projects

MERL-UITU Graduates presented their Research Projects in International Conferences and Workshops.

COME JOIN OUR SUMMER CHIP DESIGNING FOUNDATION COURSE FOLLOWED BY TRAINING AT OUR MERL LAB.

MERL-UITU is the member of international foundations like RISC-V Foundation, OSFPGA Foundation, Chips Alliances, Linux Foundation, Google Summer of Code and Edge Impulse training program.

We have a working relationship with PLCT lab in China, UCROSS – USA,  TSMC ( as collaboration for PDK access), ARM Developer program, FOSSI Foundation, Cadence (EDA tool provider), Efabless and Skywater technologies.

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