New Faculty Spotlight: Vanessa Chen

Posted: May 23, 2017

Vanessa Chen
Whether through her research in humanizing machine systems, or connecting to students in the classroom, Vanessa Chen remains dedicated to finding the humanity in engineering. 

After gaining her doctorate in electrical and computer engineering (ECE) at Carnegie Mellon University, Chen said goodbye to Pennsylvania and eventually took an Assistant Professor position at The Ohio State University. 

Working in the department of ECE, she just wrapped up her first semester as an assistant professor teaching Advanced Topics in Analog VLSI Design, or ECE 7027. 

“[It] provides a good understanding how performance specifications and process technology limitations lead to implementation decisions,” Chen said. 

The class covered a comprehensive overview of systems like time-interleaved, delta-sigma, flash and folding, pipeline and SAR analog-to-digital-converters (ADCs). This fall semester, Chen teaches ECE 3020, or Introduction to Electronics. 

No matter the class, students remain her top priority.

“[I enjoy] working with bright students on interesting projects,” Chen said. “And helping students become successful researchers and engineers.” 

Lately, Chen is very engaged with her research program on world-to-information interfaces. 

“My research interest include low-power circuit designs and self-healing algorithms,” said Chen. “The ultimate goal is to integrate sensing, computing and communication in a single platform.” 

She hopes to use the single platform to create a more advanced interaction between humans and machines, and even machines with other machines. 

“This research is expected to enable the possibilities of personal biomedicine, for better quality of life, through ubiquitous sensing and cloud computing,” Chen said. 

Plus, the department has taken quite a liking to her fact-findings. In the spring of 2018, Chen will teach a new course she developed based on her research. Integrated Circuit Design of Data Converters and Phase-Locked Loops, or ECE 7020, overviews the most recent system architectures and provides real life case studies for further understanding of the content. 

Apart from her new course and research, Chen has even more goals. She hopes to collaborate more with other faculty members on projects or research. 

“In the circuit area there are faculty who work on power management and RF/sensor front-ends,” said Chen. “It would be great to team up with them and work on a project that has a bigger impact on the society.” 

For more information on Chen, her research and teachings visit:

Article by ECE Student PR Writer, Lydia Freudenberg