Central PA Signal Integrity Symposium 2019

13th Central PA Signal Integrity Symposium

April 12, 2019, 8:00am - 4:00pm
Morrison Gallery, Penn State Harrisburg

Building on the success of the previous symposiums on signal integrity, our 13th annual symposium will feature internationally recognized speakers discussing a range of topics.

Who Should Attend?

Engineers and other professionals working in the electrical connector/interconnect industry, graduate students, undergraduate seniors, and researchers.

Why Attend?

To gain an edge over competition in a challenging industry. Learn from international experts about the latest developments in signal integrity and have the opportunity to exchange ideas with them, as well as other professionals and local business leaders.


Free parking only on the Library Parking lot. Anywhere else on campus, please get a temporary parking permit from one of the automated kiosks and place it on the dashboard.


Time Activity

8:00 to 8:30 

Registration Breakfast, April 12, 2019

8:30 to 9:30  

Welcome and Plenary Speaker 1, Main Room

Mr. Gustavo Blando, Samtec.
Title: Increasing Broadband Interconnect Characterization to 60GHZ 

Gustavo Blando is a Senior Principal Engineer leading the Principal SI/PI Architect at Samtec Inc. In addition to his leadership roles, he's charged with the development of new SI/PI methodologies, high-speed characterization, tools and modeling in general. Gustavo has twenty plus years of experience in Signal Integrity and high-speed circuits.


As we continue to push for higher frequencies, manufacturing tolerances becomes a limiting factor. This is especially true for high-frequency coax launches. Any variation in pad, antipad, drill location and dimension makes a very noticeable difference in frequency and time domain plots. In this study, I’ll go through a debug exercise on a test board to show what to expect for one of these manufacturing variations. Simulations and measurement in the time and frequency domain measurements together with CT scan of boards will be shown to illustrate and connect the fabrication tolerance problem to lab results.

Presentation Slides >>>


9:40 to 11:10

Workshop 1 Main Room

Keysight/ADS Workshop

OJ Danzy and Russ Kramer "A Practical Guide to Signal Integrity: From Simulation to Measurement"

O.J. Danzy is an RF and Microwave Application Engineer at Keysight Technologies specializing in areas surrounding physical layer test, network analysis, test system design and automation. Most recently he has focused on fixture removal and in-fixture calibration methods and techniques for multiport network analysis applications. He received Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Tennessee State University and a Master of Electrical Engineering from Cornell University.

Russ Kramer specializes in IC business development at Keysight (Agilent EEsof), where he was worked since 1998. He holds a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Pennsylvania State University (University Park) and an MBA from Loyola College (Baltimore).

His interests and experience are in semiconductor processing and high-frequency/high-speed IC/MMIC design on III-V- and IV-based substrates. He has design experience using GaAs, SOI CMOS, bipolar, and BiCMOS processes and is a senior member of IEEE, Eta Kappa Nu, and Tau Beta Pi.

Presentation Slides >>>


Workshop 2, Ansys Workshop

Bill McGinn, Senior Application Engineer, Ansys Inc.

Electromagnetic Simulation Techniques for High-Speed Connector and PCB Applications

Abstract: As signal speeds of complex electronics systems increase, component and system designs require more sophisticated, accurate, and user-friendly Electromagnetics based simulation tools. Fast, accurate, EM-based simulation is now an essential tool for any engineering team to achieve product release of high-speed connectors and PCBs. This presentation will discuss advances in Electronics simulation techniques including FEM and Transient Electromagnetic Simulation techniques; Automated Connector/Board Assembly Meshing/Analysis; Electromagnetics Based EMI/EMC Analysis; Crosstalk/Impedance Scanning; Integrated Electronics/Thermal Analysis (Multiphysics); High-Performance Computing; 3D Components, etc.

Presenter: Bill McGinn is a Senior Application Engineer at ANSYS Corp. with over 20 years of experience in engineering simulation. Bill is an IEEE member and has worked in the High-Frequency Software Simulation industry covering Circuit, System, and Electromagnetic Analysis, having worked for Compact Software, Ansoft Corp. and most recently Ansys Inc. While working for Ansys he has specialized in high frequency electromagnetic, circuit and system level simulation and is involved with application development and product definition. 

Presentation Slides >>>

11:15 to 12:15 

Plenary Speaker 2

Al Neves, Wildriver Technologies
Moving Towards 112G PAM-4 Characterization - Challenges, Crux Issues

Presentation Slides >>>

12:15 to 1:10

Lunch Speaker:

Nathan Tracy, TE Connectivity 
Title:  112 Gbps Electrical Interfaces: Does rate drive architecture or does architecture enable rate?

Abstract: As the industry plans it’s move to 112 Gbps, a number of signal integrity challenges must be addressed.  Technology improvements will no doubt be part of the solution, but it is likely that evolving architectures will also be part of the solution.  This presentation will discuss the industry trends driving the need to move forward to 112 Gbps, the electrical channels and electrical architectures anticipated to be part of the 112Gbps components, equipment, and networks, and finally, share some analysis results based on some of these channels.

Nathan Tracy currently serves as OIF’s president and member of the board of directors. During the past nine years, he has also served OIF as VP of marketing, technical committee chair, and technical committee vice chair.

As a technologist on the system architecture team and manager of industry standards for the Data and Devices business unit at TE Connectivity (TE), Nathan is responsible for driving standards activities and working with key customers to enable new system architectures. Nathan has more than 30 years of experience in technology development, marketing and business development for TE in areas including RF/microwave, and high-speed signaling technology for the networking, telecom, wireless, automotive and defense markets.

Nathan is also an active member of other industry standards and associations. Currently, he is a regular attendee and contributor to the Ethernet Alliance, IEEE 802.3 and COBO. Additionally, he is active in a number of industry MSAs and forums where he has held leadership roles.

Nathan earned his Bachelor of Science Electrical Engineering Technology degree from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth.

Presentation Slides >>>

1:15 to 2:15

Plenary Speaker 3

Tracy Vincent, Dassault Systems
: Equivalent Capacitance and Multilayer Models for Effective Roughness Dielectric in PCBs with Coupling Study Shown for the Representation of Surface Roughness,


Effective Roughness Dielectric (ERD) is used to substitute copper foil roughness in a printed circuit board (PCB) interconnects. In this work, the equivalent capacitance approach is used to get the ERD parameters based on the understanding that there is a gradual variation of concentration of metallic inclusions in the transition layer between the dielectric and foil. The metallic concentration profile can be extracted from scanning electron microscopy (SEM) or high-resolution optical microscopy. The proposed model of equivalent capacitance with gradient dielectric is applied to standard (STD), very-low-profile (VLP), and hyper-very-low profile (HVLP) foils, and the frequency-dependent dielectric parameters of the homogenized ERD are calculated. The analytically calculated ERD parameters are used in 2D-FEM and 3D full-wave numerical models of the stripline structures with various types of foils. There are two types of 3D numerical models: with homogeneous ERD parameters and multilayer “space map” model. All the models show excellent agreement with measurements, and the analysis of the results of different models is provided. In addition to the ERD study, a coupling study will also be shown where weak and strong edge coupled differential lines are compared, with a slight imbalance, using mixed-mode s-parameters under different PCB technological features. Both simulation and measured results are shown and compare well.

Tracey Vincent is a support engineer for CST software and works for Dassault Systemes in the Boston area. She has a combined Bachelors/Masters Degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Herriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland. Tracey has worked as a design engineer designing microwave components. She also has a Ph.D. in Material Science from WPI in Worcester, MA, where she investigated the effect of material topography on RF signal loss.

2:30 to 4:00

Workshop 3 (Main Room)

Greg Bonaguide Rohde & Schwarz USA, Inc.

Title:  Advances in VNA-based Signal Integrity Tools and Techniques

Abstract: As backplane speeds rise, backplane/board/connector design is not getting any easier.  Join us for this workshop where we demonstrate new de-embedding techniques integrated into VNA firmware that make frequency-domain signal integrity measurements easier, more accurate, and less error-prone.  We also present new tools to predict system response to arbitrary time domain signals.  By implementing a "virtual" signal generator for multilevel PAM signals (NRZ, PAM-4, PAM-8, PAM-16), coupled with the impulse response of the measured S-parameters, eye diagrams are produced and updated in real-time.

Greg Bonaguide is a National Applications Engineer for Rohde & Schwarz, specializing in Spectrum Analyzers and Vector Network Analyzers and focusing on RF & Microwave Component testing.  He has worked in the RF & Microwave field since 1980 in roles involving RF Design, Systems Engineering, and Test & Measurement.  He holds Masters Degrees in both Electrical Engineering and Engineering Management from the University of South Florida.  He has published in journals such as Microwaves & RF, Test & Measurement World, Evaluation Engineering, and QST as well as the ARRL Handbook, and has delivered several MicroApps presentations at past IEEE-MTT shows.  He served on the 2016 EDI CON Technical Advisory Committee, was co-chairman for the 2014 International Microwave Symposium (IMS) Microwave Application Seminars (MicroApps), and served as Chairman of the IEEE Florida West Coast Section MTT/AP/ED Societies (1999-2000).

Presentation Slides >>> 



Workshop 4

John Smith: Tektronix

Tektronix PAM4 workshop. 

Tektronix will be discussing 400G test and measurement challenges. Specifically, we will focus on performing transmitter measurements of PAM4 modulated signals. We will discuss and review some of the pros and cons of using sampling oscilloscopes vs using real-time oscilloscopes in making PAM4 measurements in the optical and electrical domains. 

John Smith is Sr. Applications Engineer at Tektronix, Inc. His primary focus is high-speed serial data communications, including direct detect and phase, detect communications systems. 

Presentation Slides >>>