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Contact Info

Audrey LeGrande
Assistant Director of Alumni
and Student Relations
1072 ECE Building
306 N. Wright Street
Urbana, IL 61801
Phone: (217) 300-1783


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Alumni Awards

Young Alumni Achievement Award (2010)

For his leadership in the development of industry first 32nm metal-gate-first high-k low power CMOS platform.

Voon-Yew Aaron Thean

Voon-Yew Aaron Thean

BSEE ’96, MSEE ’97, PhD ’01
Engineering Manager,
Qualcomm Inc.
San Diego, California

Aaron Thean is the engineering manager and technologist for 20-nm CMOS technologies for Qualcomm’s CDMA technologies. He joined Qualcomm from IBM, where he served as the front-end-of-line device manager for the 28-nm and 32-nm low-power bulk CMOS research and development at IBM’s Semiconductor Research and Development Center in New York. In this role, he led an international device team of engineers from IBM, Chartered Semiconductors, Infineon, Samsung, Toshiba, STMicroelectronics, NECEL, and GlobalFoundaries, to develop the Technology Alliance’s first-generation low-power CMOS technology with high-k and metal gate technology. At IBM, Aaron also led the device development work leading to successful chip-level demonstration of ARM’s mobile processor with the new 32-nm process.

Prior to joining IBM, he was a senior member of the technical staff at Freescale Semiconductor and the manager of the Novel Device Group in Austin, Texas. There, he led the advanced device/process R&D of exploratory technologies base on novel materials and transistor architectures. His published work included ultra-thin SOI, strained-Si SOI, and 3D devices like FinFETs.

Aaron has published over 40 papers in leading peer-reviewed journals and conferences. As an active participant in international conferences, he has been invited to present papers at the IEEE International Solid State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) (San Francisco, 2006) and Electrochemical Society (ECS) Meeting (Chicago, 2007). He has also served as a member of the technical program subcommittees and conference co-chair for the IEEE International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM). He currently holds 37 U.S. patents on advanced semiconductor technology and processes.