Cambridge opens computer architecture research centre

Cambridge opens computer architecture research centre

Technology News |
By Nick Flaherty

The computer science department at the University of Cambridge has opened a specialist computer architecture research centre.

Computer architecture is a critical area of computing that underpins today’s technologies and drives the next generation of computing systems. The university points to the National Semiconductor Strategy and the need to invest in developing the next generation of leading researchers

Cambridge lays claim to the first computer science department in the country, established over 80 years ago, helping lay the foundations of modern computing, building the first programmable computer to come into service and leading the early development of programming languages and operating systems.

The department has taken a leading role in areas from AI to quantum computing to computer architecture and points to 330 companies set up by staff and alumni, including open source hardware company lowRISC, along with dividiti, Ellexus, Embecosm, Tenison Technology EDA and KRAI. All of these are directly related to the Department’s Computer Architecture group.


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The department works with ARM on the CHERI security architecture and currently leads the UK Government’s £200+ million Digital Security by Design programme

The Centre will be led by Prof Timothy Jones, whose research spans computer architecture, compilers and binary modification tools, often working across different system layers. His particular focus is on extracting parallelism to improve performance, reliability and security.

“At Cambridge, we attract the brightest students from across the world and we’re embedded within the Cambridge Cluster of over 5000 knowledge-intensive companies. This combination of academic expertise and industrial links means we’re very well equipped to train the next generation of engineers and seed the entrepreneurs of the future,” said Jones.

“Our plan is to create a dedicated Computer Architecture Research Centre here in the Department for 20 PhD students.”

“Alongside traditional computer architecture and microarchitecture of general-purpose cores and accelerators, we have expertise in compilers and toolchains, hardware security, applied semantics, machine-learning systems, networking and quantum computing,” he added.

“The Computer Architecture Research Centre will draw on this breadth of supervisor experience from across the Department, allowing students freedom to explore the areas they are most passionate about, while addressing industry-relevant research.”



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