What To Expect From The International Microwave Symposium (IMS) 2023

Guests Gayle Collins, John Wood | Uploaded : 12/12/2023

The EEcosystem Podcast

What To Expect From The International Microwave Symposium (IMS) 2023

In this episode, Gayle Collins and John Wood, Co-General Chairs of the International Microwave Symposium (IMS 2023) join us in this episode to talk about all that attendees can expect to see, hear and learn at this years impressive conference.

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								 [00:00:00] Judy Warner: Hi everyone, it's Judy Warner. Welcome to day one of our I M S 2023 tailgate party. Today we're pre-gaming with the two co-gen chairs of I M S 2023. Today I'm speaking with Gayle Collins and John Wood, who've been working tirelessly for over a year to bring you an amazing conference. We are gonna talk about the technical tracks, the social activities all the diversity that the show brings you with women and micro waves, young professionals, and so much more.

I think you're really gonna enjoy this. Deep dive into all that this show offers. And remember, if you're coming to the show, come by and see me at Booth 1855 where I'll be podcasting live from the show floor. And we're handing out great prizes from our wonderful sponsors. Now let's jump right into this conversation with Gayle Collins and [00:01:00] John Wood s co-chairs.

Hi, Gail. Hi John. So thanks so much for joining us. I'm so glad you can come on to the podcast today and tell us all about IMS.

[00:01:10] Gayle Collins: Hi, Judy.

[00:01:11] John Wood: Hi, Judy. Thanks for inviting us.

[00:01:12] Gayle Collins: Yes.

[00:01:13] Judy Warner: So good to see you. Your background there is glorious. I haven't forgiven you from moving for, from San Diego to the North Carolina in the research triangle, but it looks like it's really lovely there.

[00:01:25] Gayle Collins: It is. It is. It is. It is. As is Southern California.

[00:01:30] Judy Warner: It is. We've given you a good excuse to come back with International Micro Wave Symposium coming up in June. So before listeners, why don't you just talk about, what you do at for your professional background, and then what led you to become the co generaler chairs of I M S 2023?

[00:01:50] John Wood: Okay, here, stop.

[00:01:52] Gayle Collins: Sure. I designed power amplifiers and I've visited in designing power amplifiers from [00:02:00] megahertz to many gigahertz for quite some time. And that led me to start attending IMS and getting inspired by the technical papers there and then participating on the steering committees and just became part of our lives, I guess you might say.

[00:02:25] Judy Warner: How about you, John?

[00:02:26] John Wood: I've been in the sort of electronics and microwave industry for pretty well all my life since graduating. I graduated from lead university a long time ago with a PhD in device electronics, and was a professor for a while and then moved to the states and became involved in research with Peter Packard and one of the things that they encouraged was Parkinson patient in conferences. So that's when I started going IMS. And when we were living in San Diego, we we were thinking about IMS. One of our colleagues put in a [00:03:00] bid for getting IMF in San Diego and failed. So we thought we'd have a go and and we were lucky enough to get awarded the the championship of IMS.

And that was it. Cool.

[00:03:09] Judy Warner: Yes I was actually part of that story. I remember it very well. This is 2015, and I remember what got me there, but. You guys were running the publicity committee at the time and invited me to be part of that, which was so much fun. It's such a great community. And then it all got over and we were all taking a deep breath and John's guess what?

We made a bit for San Diego. You wanna do it again in 2023? And I'm like, that's so far away. But here we are. Yes. How time flies. Yeah. It's fun to be part of your journey. And now here you are co-chairing this show. So because we do have a good percentage of our audience here on The EEcosystem that RF and systems engineers, I thought this would be a good chance to talk about this community, the value of this conference, and,[00:04:00] encourage people that may not know about it.

To attend and just raise their awareness and hopefully rope them into coming and joining the fun and all the great professional content. So who would you say, as the co-general chairs, who would you say that this conference is for? And I know it has more than one portion to it, so if you jump into those different parts as well, that'd be great.

[00:04:25] Gayle Collins: I'll just kick it off by saying it's the largest microwave. Symposium in the world in terms of technical exhibition, the student programs and John will speak a little bit. Yeah. More about the attendees and who should go.

[00:04:47] John Wood: Okay. It covers everything you might possibly think of. In the general field of radio waves, from very low frequencies, right through, RF radio for handheld violence and [00:05:00] stuff like that through microwaves, mill waves, terra, hertz, and all the way towards light, covers all the frequencies.

Scope covers everything from fundamental physics and circuit theory through the device technology making transistors components through circuit design, such as PAs. And then the modules and subsystems have put together to form the big systems and microwaves is a big part of that. And so as Gayle mention, it covers pass the program for students.

So there's a lot of interest for students in the technical side. There's cover academics, professors, professionals in industry. Consultants, anyone working in the RX space basically. There are about eight, 10,000 attendees on average in total. We're looking for a big attendance.

This year. San Diego's a bit of a draw.

[00:05:51] Gayle Collins: Yeah. So it's a great place to meet people and network.

[00:05:56] Judy Warner: Yeah. Especially this time of year, huh? Huh? Yes. Oh [00:06:00] yeah. Especially this time of year. It's beautiful.

[00:06:02] Gayle Collins: Yes,

[00:06:03] John Wood: it is. Yeah. And the whole week concludes the Radio Frequency IC Symposium, which starts off the week and the Micro Measurements Conference a r FTG on Friday.

And there's also a Connected Future Summit, which which is a forward looking symposium within a conference, if you like, that's focusing on 6G and connective transportation this year. So that'd be quite an interesting data spent.

[00:06:28] Judy Warner: So from my seat in the house, it there used to be a clear delineation between say, HighSpeed digital NRF, and that is becoming blurrier and blurrier.

And because of IOT and wireless being integrated into systems, what I've noticed is that people who weren't traditionally maybe in the RF or microwave space are being drug into it. Do you think this would be a good. Place for engineers to up their know how in regards to [00:07:00] designing those type of devices.

[00:07:03] Gayle Collins: Absolutely. And one of the things we've done this year is put out kind of previews of the conference on the IMS website, so it gives people a foundation so that they can attend the conference and attend papers that perhaps may not be. Specifically in their field of knowledge. So I'm a PA designer, but I know a lot about control theory and filters and you name it all the way down to digital.

So it absolutely is a way to up your game by attending IMS.

[00:07:41] Judy Warner: Okay. That's good to know because that's one pain point I see as one with sort of a foot in both worlds. And so I thought that would be really interesting to our audience.

[00:07:51] Gayle Collins: Add to that.

[00:07:52] John Wood: Yeah, as well as that there are, there is three boot camps this year.

There's the RF boot camp that will drag people in, give a ground [00:08:00] up know, in introductions to RF circuits and circuit design. There's the artificial intelligence and machine learning bootcamp which is pretty well worked, described. We've also got a quantum microwaves boot camp, which is a brand new field how microwaves can affect quantum electronics and vice versa.

And that's that's a really topical thing for us to do. So we've got those workshops cover everything from cutting edge to reviews of of technology. So pick out a workshop job, 30 something workshops this year.

[00:08:33] Judy Warner: That's amazing. Because I have been serving on the MP3 committee or the promotion publicity committee.

I've seen this stuff all going on, but I, so I happen to know that there are themes, and you mentioned some of them for the boot camps. Are there other parallel themes and then can you just give us. There's so much, it's overwhelming to look at the website cuz there's so much great [00:09:00] technical content.

Can you give again for our listeners an overview of some of those tracks and the things that might be of interest to them?

[00:09:10] John Wood: Okay. The o the overall technical theme is we're pushing systems and applications as we want to get a, a. Bigger and broader view of how microwaves can impact the overall system design.

We got, conference runs Tuesday through Thursday. We've got a theme day on each day. Tuesday is basically wireless and all wireless connectivity, MI range, things like that. And the AI ml theme, artificial intelligence in, in ra. On Wednesday we've got Mbse model based systems engineering and gare gonna let you know a bit more about that and space.

And then on Thursday we have biomedical applications of rf. There's a lot of biomedical companies in the San Diego area, so we're hoping for a lot of interest from that perspective. But MBSE is one of the things we've been really pushing

[00:09:59] Gayle Collins: this year. [00:10:00] It's quite interesting.

It is a technique of a evaluating your design on the system level. We've heard of physical based design and trying to get all the different time constants into your stimulation. So you have all the way up the whole system, but model based systems engineering goes a step further and puts your design in the environment in which it

[00:10:28] Judy Warner: will have to perform.

[00:10:30] Gayle Collins: So for. Example for aerospace and an airplane would be put into a, in an environment where it might have to deal with lightning strikes or a lab equipment, setting up a lab, like a EM lab. Where are the fields going and how are they interfering with your testing? Model-based system engineering is going to be a theme.

We have panel sessions and technical sessions, plus demos [00:11:00] that will be down on the system floor. There's a couple companies that will be highlighting their activities in model-based system engineering and design, so it's quite interesting. Yeah.

[00:11:13] John Wood: And we thought we put it together with space. Cause one of the leading applications has been for space and aerospace design.

So it's it's quite a good partnership.

[00:11:21] Judy Warner: Yeah I can, I could see that between, there's so much going on and satellite communications and not to mention the commercialization of space and all that involved. So it should be interesting to see the participation at that level. Speaking of which the one thing I've always appreciated about IMS is, one, the technical rigor is amazing.

Can you touch on, how that came to be and I think how the show has come to evolve to be such a rich networking environment with so much diversity. Yet hold [00:12:00] the technical depth that it does and and what you think people might expect to experience when they come, maybe as a first timer.

[00:12:08] Gayle Collins: I have to give credit. It has been people like you volunteering over the years that have really formed IMS and contributed to IMS and made it what it is.

[00:12:20] John Wood: Yeah. You mentioned networking. As I said we're hoping for a big attendance this year. We think it's gonna be the return to face-to-face networking in a big way.

And we've all met, missed out over the past few years. So there's a whole bunch of social events that are really ways of extending your network. And as you mentioned, women in microwaves they have a reception. Young professionals also have a reception. There's the ham radio, social, which is gonna be really interesting this year.

There's a possibility of satellite pattern and with satellites as demos. And all those social receptions are on Tuesday in the Hilton Bayfront Hotel. So you can, you can switch from one to another pretty [00:13:00] easily. Hopefully make some new contacts and meet some old ones. We have the sales Pav, I think Gayle wants to talk about that.

[00:13:06] Gayle Collins: Oh, yes. The San Diego is just a fantastic place to have a conference. The Convention Center is wonderful. You have views of the San Diego Bay, you have the Embar Cordero where you can walk, and right on the other end, so we have the Hilton conventions. Or the Hilton, which is the conference hotel at one end of the convention center.

Then at the other end of the section that we're using, we have the sales pavilion, which is right next to the technical area where the technical sessions will be held, and the sales pavilion is this wonderful room, oh, again, overlooking the bay. It will have two of the receptions in it, the opening night reception, and R F I C.

But in addition, we've gathered together quite a few [00:14:00] events that are normally spread out through the conference. We put 'em in one area, so you'll be able to go to one area. For the interactive forums for the Student design competition, the YPs Lounge is there. And what am I forgetting?

[00:14:19] John Wood: The ip, the YPs have done a good job.

They've got a nice programming events of panel sessions and talks and they've a nice lounge there somewhere.

[00:14:27] Judy Warner: And that's kudos again to Young Professionals Program. Again, I go to a lot of conferences in a lot of different segments, but as far as enriching and making really great programs for young professionals, again, just kudos to this community for creating such a great program.

You guys really do a great job.

[00:14:49] Gayle Collins: Yeah. Yeah. And this year we're also having the rest and relaxed lounge to make sure we hit all portions of our population. So I've nicknamed [00:15:00] it the Ops lounge.

[00:15:04] Judy Warner: Is that for old people like me? Old.

[00:15:08] Gayle Collins: Old

[00:15:08] John Wood: professionals?

[00:15:09] Gayle Collins: Yes. Old professionals,

[00:15:10] Judy Warner: like all professionals.

Okay. Okay. I got it.

[00:15:15] Gayle Collins: Rest and meet you.

[00:15:16] Judy Warner: Yes, I was pushing for Lazy Boys, but we didn't quite go there. Dang it. What about those massage chairs from the mall? Gayle, come on.

[00:15:25] Gayle Collins: Yeah, there you go. That's what we, there you go. So there's gonna be something for everyone. Yeah.

[00:15:31] Judy Warner: It sounds like an amazing conference.

I'm going to share all the details. Did you wanna go in to some depth about the tracks or the number of papers, because I know you really are in this post covid comeback year and you wanna talk about some of that technical depths?

[00:15:50] Gayle Collins: IMS is back, and I'll let John talk about all the numbers, but IMS is back.


[00:15:57] John Wood: we've had, yeah, we've got[00:16:00] we had about 750 papers submitted which is as, as good as it was before, before Covid. So we've got 360 accepted papers sessions across three days, multiple parallel tracks from. Device technology through circuit design, passive circuits, and a whole range of systems as say wireless systems wireless power transmission radar, aerospace and space applications multiple antenna systems, a whole range of things for people to gain the systems aspects.

And we are really pushing that and it's been very well received apparently by the technical community cuz we've got lots of papers.

[00:16:41] Gayle Collins: But we're back to pre pandemic numbers and figures. We have a fantastic exhibition.

[00:16:48] Judy Warner: That's great news. And yeah. And so on the exhibition, how are you doing it? As far as I've been many times to i m s. And how are the numbers of exhibitors? How has that come [00:17:00] along as well? Do you know that off the top of your head? Yeah,

[00:17:02] Gayle Collins: we got eight

[00:17:03] John Wood: just shy of 550 exhibitors, which is amazing. Again, pre pandemic number. It's which is 25% more than last year. That's about 90,000 square feet of of booth space 900 booths.

So it's pretty, it's a pretty big exhibition. It's back together, as you might remember it, right before, in 20 17, 20 18, 20 19.

[00:17:25] Judy Warner: And again, for our listeners, that's another reason you wanna go because you go and you see the whole ecosystem. Of everything, device to systems, to materials to filter. There is so much there that it's a great place for you to go and maybe meet new suppliers, find new technologies.

It's a wonderful, here we go. On your walk and shoes. Yeah.

[00:17:49] Gayle Collins: The micro apps is the industry. People presenting more application oriented papers. We have a demo, the Satcoms [00:18:00] demo.

[00:18:00] John Wood: Yeah, there's the MTT Society Micro Theory and Technology Society has been sponsoring student student satellite challenge to build some hardware that we're hoping will actually get launched next year.

And there were 30 teams originally, and that's been whittled down over the past three, four years. And the three finalists will appear at IMS in San Diego and demonstrating the mockup designs in a, in the systems pavilion on the exhibition floor each day. And

[00:18:29] Gayle Collins: so come ask them hard questions.

[00:18:30] John Wood: Ask them hard questions. Yeah. They'll be

[00:18:33] Judy Warner: grill the kids

[00:18:35] John Wood: pilot school. Yeah. The The winners will be named this year. So that'll be cool.

[00:18:40] Judy Warner: Yes. That's great. Has there been anything that I have not asked you about because it's so broad, I'm worried I'm gonna miss something.

[00:18:49] John Wood: You could don't, we could give you a bit of background on the the plenary speakers that we have.

[00:18:52] Judy Warner: I would love that. Yes, please.

[00:18:54] John Wood: Industrial showcase and industrial keynotes, which are all new. Oh, yes. Which are new innovations. [00:19:00] Okay. The two plenary speakers we've got an opening plenary speaker, ed Gotha, fellow of the i e. He's worked for many years in millimeter wave technology.

He invented the on wafer probe for millimeter wave measurements to measure millimeter wave ics and basically enabling that whole industry. And he'll be giving a really good talk on the impact of transmission lines on everyday life, basically on the way we communicate. And then we have Sarah Nadian, who's gonna be our closing closing event speaker.

She has been working in STEM and steam activities for a number of years with Qualcomm, and they're with U C S D. And getting young people as young as eight into building. Wow,

[00:19:49] Judy Warner: that's amazing. I love that.

[00:19:52] Gayle Collins: And she's very enthusiastic and I don't know all the details of what she has planned, but [00:20:00] I think it's good.

Going to be very fun and very interesting.

[00:20:04] Judy Warner: That sounds great.

[00:20:07] John Wood: A couple of innovations we've had this year. We, yes, we mentioned that it's for student academic professors, industry professionals. We have been trying to encourage more participation from industry and a couple ways we are doing those.

You wanna talk about our keynotes?

[00:20:20] Gayle Collins: Oh, yes. So this year we have industry keynote speakers dispersed between the tracks. Oh, the topics will fit in. Yeah it's gonna be good. So we have quite a selection of people who are active in industry, in research and industry in getting products out. And they're taking roadmap for where our industry is going.

So it gives some guidance to where, where, what should the academics be looking at, if, where is this going? What are we gonna launch into space or launch under the ocean or. [00:21:00] There's any number of things that people are out there doing that's quite exciting.

So look for the industry keynote speakers. They're staggered so that they are at different times. So if you want to go see all you can.

[00:21:15] John Wood: Yeah, and if you look in the program book specifically, which will be online on the app that you can, all the keynotes are marked with a T logo. So you can pick one app pretty quickly.

The other thing that we're doing is, is the showcase and this will happen on the Monday. Right before the opening plenary session, and it's 18 of the best industry papers will come and present their work in a, in essentially a poster type of session. Interactive forum.

Interactive forum. There'll be several demos. Several of the people. Authors have said, can we bring a demo and show you how we do it? Yeah, of course.

[00:21:53] Gayle Collins: And it's a great way for students, for example, to start meeting people in the industry.

[00:21:59] Judy Warner: You bet. [00:22:00]

[00:22:00] Gayle Collins: So we're quite excited about that. Wednesday morning at six 30 for the first time, we are having a fun run walk or walk three K across the Embarcadero.

If everything goes as planned, I'm gonna be out there doing that and soaking in the sun.

[00:22:24] Judy Warner: I love that. I'm excited to, to participate in that one too. If you're gonna have a run walk, you might as well do it on the Embarcadero in San Diego overlooking the bay. It's pretty spectacular. Yeah. And it's pretty good turnout for that too.

I think I heard that already. Something like over 200 people are signed up for that, right?

[00:22:47] Gayle Collins: Yeah. And we'll be there'll be a few gifts that go along with it, including, I think we have bracelets so that. Everybody can go out at their own PA pace, but you'll be able to spot your co [00:23:00] conference attendees along Vanguard.

Oh, fun. And so it's,

[00:23:04] Judy Warner: oh, that's neat.

[00:23:04] Gayle Collins: Another another great opportunity to network. So if you really wanna impress somebody, you might either wanna beat them or let them win.

But the social theme, we're having a Latin American theme that is going to be a thread throughout the conference. So the opening night reception theme is a Latin American street party. We will also have panel sessions about microwaves in Latin America and focus sessions. So we're really giving a bit of a spotlight on our colleagues from that part of the world.

[00:23:46] John Wood: Yeah. Yeah. This gal said it's gonna run through. We have weeks now. The there'll be a beach party on Wednesday. The exhibition exhibitor's reception will be a beach party. So [00:24:00] it'll be all that something going on.

[00:24:01] Gayle Collins: So you wanna brush up on your Spanish survey P board.

[00:24:09] Judy Warner: Yeah. No kidding. Okay. I know how to say that one. I'm ready.

Again, it sounds like fun, technically rich great for first timers, good for old timers. It really sounds and feels like there's really something for everybody. And thank you both for coming on and giving us a, a snapshot of the smorgasboard that y'all have planned for this year.

It is June 11th through 16th. Is that right guys? That's right. 11th through 16th. At the San Diego Convention Center, I will put all the links to everything we've talked about in the show notes so you can go register, learn more, and also there's a great app so you can also download the app. So again, lots of rich resources.


[00:24:58] Gayle Collins: the technical teasers on the [00:25:00] website. Yep. So you can start participating and that's open to everyone. Yeah. So that'll give people a good idea of what IMS is all about technically as well.

[00:25:10] Judy Warner: Awesome. Okay. Technical teaser. Again, thank you John. Miguel, it's a delight to work with you. I appreciate you both so much.

You. Besides that you both work really hard and contribute to the industry professionally. Privately. You do so much to enrich this community and you give so much of your time, and I thank you for working so hard over, particularly this last year, but. For multiple years of all you've contributed to the show.

So thank you so much. So make sure to join us for IMS 2023 for the coolest ideas under the sun. Make sure you go check out the show notes. We hope to see you there. Thanks for joining us to this week. We'll see you next week. Until then, remember to always stay connected to the ecosystem.

[00:25:56] Gayle Collins: Surf's, up. Yes.[00:26:00]