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Zhu Receives NSF Early Career Award

In 2010, Zhichun Zhu.Zhichun Zhu, then an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, was awarded a five-year, $400,000 National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Award, the foundation’s most prestigious honor for junior science and engineering faculty.

Zhu used the grant funds to design the architecture for building the next generation of computers that will run on multi-core processors. Those computers will need to run faster, cooler and more efficiently. What’s required, Zhu explains, is new “universal and scalable memory architecture” that will require software to enable many processors to work together in one device.

Zhu’s grant will fund a graduate research assistant. Also benefiting from the research are her undergraduate students who will learn about the potential and the pitfalls of the upcoming multi-core computer era. Zhu will challenge them to learn to write the complicated parallel software programs required by next-generation computers.

Created in 2001 by merging the computer science and electrical engineering departments, UIC’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees. Half of the faculty are fellows of the prestigious Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

The UIC College of Engineering, the top-ranked public engineering school in Chicago, has six academic departments: bioengineering, chemical engineering, civil and materials engineering, computer science, electrical and computer engineering, and mechanical and industrial engineering.

The University of Illinois at Chicago is a premier comprehensive urban university with 15 colleges, including medicine, nursing, pharmacy and other health sciences, business, engineering, architecture, arts, education, and liberal arts and science disciplines.

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Zhu's research and award
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
College of Engineering
University of Illinois at Chicago