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April 2014

Improving high speed signals of data transmission hardware

As demand for faster data transmission rates places pressure on existing computer hardware, companies like Snowbush-Semtech IP are keen to ensure that every dollar spent on developing new products will have a return on investment. After investing in a two-year postdoctoral fellowship with Dr. Haleh Vahedi through Mitacs Elevate, the company saw such tremendous value in her work that they decided to hire her full-time.

Having completed a PhD in Electrical Engineering, Dr. Haleh Vahedi was excited to make new, local connections to advance her career.  During her Mitacs Elevate fellowship, Haleh was supervised by Dr. Tony Chan Carusone of the University of Toronto’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering to design an electrical circuit for data transmission at 28 gigabits per second without loss of signal quality or reception.  The circuit she designed could easily be added to existing Snowbush hardware, improving signal integrity without adding complexity to the system.

During her fellowship, Haleh took part in a series of Mitacs Step workshops that included essentials for business communication, networking and project management. These workshops allowed Haleh to hone her interpersonal skills in the workplace, and to better plan and predict the resources and time required to efficiently complete projects.

For Saman Sadr, Director of Analog Design and IP Development for Snowbush-Semtech, Mitacs Elevate was a very attractive program to collaborate with due to the industry-focused research it provided. Haleh spent the majority of her fellowship at the company offices, becoming familiar with the daily practices and procedures of the company. It soon became clear that Haleh was a valuable member of the team:

“The skill set Haleh developed was so strong, so marketable for industry, that she was a great candidate to hire. So we employed her first on a contractual-basis, and now she has joined the company full time.” said Mr. Sadr.

 Haleh now works as an analog designer for the company, developing new ways to improve high speed signals at the cutting-edge of data transmission hardware.  

“I want to thank Mitacs for this great opportunity. I learned so much and am so grateful for the experiences I had.”


Mitacs thanks the Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario for their support of the Elevate research internship in this story. Across Canada, the Elevate program also receives support from Alberta Innovates, the Government of British Columbia, the Government of New Brunswick, the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, the Government of Nova Scotia, the Government of Prince Edward Island, the Government of Quebec, and Research Manitoba.


Do you have a business challenge that could benefit from a research solution? If so, contact Mitacs today to discuss partnership opportunities: BD@mitacs.ca