2022 SSCS Student Circuit Contest

Open to both Undergraduate and Graduate Students

  • The goal of this challenge is to design an integrated circuit by using the greatest number of components picked from the provided list. 
  • The circuit does not have to be original and/or optimized, although a proper functionality is expected (e.g. an amplifier has to amplify,  an oscillator has to oscillate, etc…)
  • Beside the number of components used, the evaluation committee will judge the rationale of the solution proposed and the circuit characterization (i.e. simulation provided).
  •  The circuit can be implemented in any regular CMOS technology available to you. (Please state the technology adopted in your the submission and how this affected your design) 


Some rules must be followed:

• Circuit has to have one ground (GND) and one voltage supply (VDD) compatible with the technology you use
• Each component of the list can be used only once
• The use of each component must be necessary for the proper functionality of the proposed circuit (e.g. no dummies components)
• The proposed circuits has to have at least an identified output 
• Component parameters specified in the provided list cannot be changed. (others will depend on technology you choose such as Cox, mobility, voltage threshold, supply voltage,  etc..).
• Circuits must be simulated and simulations results must be provided to demonstrate a proper functionality. 

List of components:

• Ideal input voltage source 
• Ideal current source (25uA)
• GND net 
• VDD net connected to a supply
• 10 transistors with the following aspect ratio (W/L) 
- 5 pMOSFET:  (20/1) (20/1) (5/1) (5/1) (5/1) - four terminal device (gate, drain, source, body)
- 5 nMOSFET: (20/1) (20/1) (10/1)  (10/1)  (10/1) - four terminal device (gate, drain, source, body)
• 3 ideal resistors 5kΩ 10kΩ 20kΩ
• Jolly component: 1 ideal capacitor with an arbitrary value


And the 3 winners of the SSCS Circuit Contest 2022 are:

  • Michelle Chow, IEEE Student Member, University of Calgary
    • A "three-transistor" high-gain amplifier
  • Kshitiz Tyagi, IEEE Student Member, University of California, Los Angeles
    • A 10-Transistor, 20-Gb/s 203-μW CDR
  • Matias Jara, IEEE Student Member, University of California, Los Angeles
    • A 10-Transistor 31.8-dB, SNDR 208-kHz BW ADC


You can read more about their solutions in the Winter Issue of SSC Magazine.



Up to three contestants with the best answers will receive US$2K each towards attending an SSCS-sponsored conference (ISSCC, CICC, ESSCIRC, VLSI Symp., ASSC). This award is paid either as a reimbursement following the attended conference or will be paid directly to the conference for registration and to the hotel for accommodations. All the submitters with the right answers will receive one year of free membership in the Solid-State Circuits Society, and their names will be highlighted in the Solid-State Circuits Magazine.



If you have any questions regarding the contest, please email sscs-contest@ieee.org