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Computer Engineering


The research program in computer engineering encompasses the modeling, analysis, and evaluation of next-generation computer systems. Research activities in computer systems are explored at various design levels, including VLSI, circuit, logic, microarchitecture, system, and network architectures. In particular, the research addresses aspects of high performance, low power, mobility, security, and reliability in computer systems -- including parallel processing, multiprocessing, embedded systems, and distributed network processing architectures.

Hardware-software tradeoffs play a central role in the work, specifically in the study of the interaction of computer hardware and optimizing/parallelizing compilers. The computer engineering group interacts with the digital signal processing, VLSI, and remote sensing groups to develop interdisciplinary solutions to research problems.

Graduate Courses

ECEN 5423, Chaotic Dynamics
ECEN 5513, Real-Time Hardware-Software System Design
ECEN 5523, Compiler Construction Tools
ECEN 5533, Fundamental Concepts of Programming Languages
ECEN 5543, Software Systems Engineering
ECEN 5553, Parallel Processing
ECEN 5593, Advanced Computer Architecture
ECEN 5603, Software Project Management
ECEN 5613, Embedded System Design
ECEN 5623, Real-Time Embedded Systems
ECEN 5633, Hybrid Embedded Systems
ECEN 5653, Real-time Digital Media
ECEN 5673, Distributed Systems


J. Bennett (Ph.D., Washington), distributed operating systems, location independent computing, and high-performance parallel computing.

E. Bradley (Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology), scientific computation and AI; nonlinear dynamics and chaos; classical mechanics; network theory and circuit design.

P. Cerny (Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania), formal verification, program analysis, program synthesis.

R. Dameron (M.S., Syracuse), software engineering, software project management, software performance.

D. Grunwald (Ph.D., Illinois), computer architecture, microarchitecture, operating systems, network systems, and mobile computing.

E. Keller (Ph.D., Princeton), networked systems, virtualization, system security

M. Lightner (Ph.D., Carnegie-Mellon) learning technologies, cognitive assistance, assistive technology

A. Pleszkun (Ph.D., Illinois), computer architecture, VLSI design, and information storage.

L. Shang (Ph.D., Princeton), embedded systems, design for nanotechnologies, design automation, and computer architecture.

Emeritus Faculty

V.P. Heuring (Ph.D., Florida), language translation, computer architecture, and optical computing.

W.M. Waite (Ph.D., Columbia), compiler construction and domain-specific computing.


The computer architecture research group has a network of twenty Itanium and Itanium-2 workstations. In addition, a microprocessor development laboratory has over 40 Linux-based development stations. CAD software for computer design and simulation is available on Sun Microsyustem and HP (Hewlett-Packard) workstations. Optical computing support is available through the Optoelectronic Computing Systems Center.

Current Research Support

Research support is provided by Intel, the National Science Foundation, Colorado State University, the Colorado Center for Information Storage, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Assistantships and fellowships funded by these sources are available to qualified students.