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Keynote Speakers

Dr. Matt Casto


Topic: Accelerating Wireless and Microwave Innovation - No Excuses! 


Chief Technology Officer, The Midwest Microelectronics Consortium (MMEC)


Dr. Casto joined MMEC in 2023, previously serving 20 years in numerous Department of Defense (DoD) technical leadership positions including roles at the Pentagon in the Office of the Secretary of Defense as Director for the DoD Trusted and Assured Microelectronics (T&AM) Program and in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force as the Department of Air Force Senior Strategic Advisor for Microelectronics Innovation.  As Chief for the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Aerospace Components and Subsystems Division at Wright Patterson Air Force Base Dr. Casto led the discovery, development, and integration of affordable sensor and countermeasure technologies for Air and Space Force warfighters. 

In addition to his DoD experience, Dr. Casto has proven expertise in driving commercial product innovation.  From 2021 to 2023 he successfully led high volume intelligent secure access control operations as CTO and Senior Vice President of Manufacturing and Engineering R&D at The Genie Company. 

Dr. Casto has authored more than 50 publications, patents, and invited talks on advanced, secure, and reliable semiconductor and electronics technology and is a 2020 inductee and member of the IEEE Hardware Oriented Security and Trust (HOST) Hall of Fame.

Dr. Harry Shaw


Topic: Trends in classical and quantum optical communications for space


Principal Investigator Quantum Communications and Computing, Exploration and Space Communications Division

Sustaining Engineering Manager,

Advanced Communications Capabilities for Exploration and Science Systems (ACCESS) Project office

Staff Engineer, Telecommunication and Network Technologies Branch, NASA/GSFC

Guest editor, Entropy, an MDPI journal


Dr. Shaw has over 30 years of experience in technology development, computer networking, information theory, microelectronic space communications, and quantum communications. His expertise is space communications including quantum communications. His personal area of R&D involves generation of next generation cryptography tools through the combined use of nucleic acid-protein modeling, information theory, and digital signal processing theory.


Classical optical communications continue to grow as a viable option for wideband, high data rate space communications. Classical optical communications also provides a base for expansion into quantum optical communications. Classical optical communications can provide the required classical channel for quantum communications and subsystems developed for classical optical communications can be upgraded for use in quantum optical communications. Quantum communications is not a panacea for all forms space communications and there are limitations to what can be achieved in the communications in the quantum domain. In this talk I will discuss demonstrations and applications of classical and quantum communications for space and some of the limitations and challenges for the future.

Julio Costa, Ph.D

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Topic: RFSOI for the RF Front-End: Then, Now and Tomorrow

Affiliation: Global Foundries - Vice President, RF technology Development


Julio Costa  was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil.  He is currently  Vice President of RF Technologies at Global Foundries in the Product Management Organization which he joined in 2022.  Previously he was a Senior Director of  Technology Development for QORVO in Greensboro, North Carolina, where he had been since 2002 leading a group of researchers focusing on Silicon SOI and RF MEMS technologies for next generation wireless systems.  He received his BSEE (1984) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and his MSEE (1987) and PHD (1992) from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis.   He worked at Motorola Semiconductor Products  Sector (Freescale) from 1991 to 2001, where he worked as a researcher and technical manager in silicon and GaAs RF technology development.   He worked at ON Semiconductor until 2002, where he was a Director of R&D focusing on power management technology solutions.   He is the author of over 60 issued patents in the area of device and process technologies in RF, and has numerous publications and presentations in international conferences


RFSOI technologies are used today in the RF section of all cellular handsets, performing a number of different critical RF switching and tuning functions, and recently also providing an even larger number of low noise amplifiers, digital CMOS blocks and critical analog functions. This talk will discuss the history of RFSOI technology, the critical enablers that allowed it to in a relatively short amount of time, completely replace the existing III-V switch technologies. The progression to today’s modern RFSOI technologies and its array of device options will also be described, as well as future trends in RF switching technologies. In particular, the RF front end of the future will incorporate a number of 3D technologies in both die-to-wafer and wafer-to-wafer bonding approaches in order to reduce critical dimensions while providing superior RF performance.

Plenary Speakers

Dr. Paolo Focardi


Topic: Antenna Systems for Space Applications at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Affiliation: Group Lead at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory


Paolo Focardi (Senior Member, IEEE) received the M.Sc. degree in electronic engineering and the Ph.D. degree in computer science and telecommunication engineering from the University of Florence, Florence, Italy, in 1998 and 2002, respectively. From 1999 to 2000, he was involved in the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission in collaboration with the Italian Space Agency, Rome, Italy. In 2001, he visited the NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pasadena, CA, USA, where he was involved in the development of an accurate electromagnetic model of THz detectors. In 2002, he joined the staff of JPL and became a Staff Engineer in 2014. From 2004 to 2009, he was involved in a project to remotely detect human vital signs that in 2009 led to the creation of a start-up company, Advanced TeleSensors Inc., Pasadena. In 2008, he supported the development of the A1 and A2 antennas for JUNO and then he joined the RF Team, developing the instrument reflector antenna for Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP). In 2009, he joined the Spacecraft Antennas Group, JPL, and in 2010, he started the design of the feed horn assembly for SMAP and was able to model the entire spacecraft in order to get very accurate predictions of the radiation pattern. He is currently responsible for the design and delivery of the NISAR feed assembly. He is involved in analytical and numerical methods in electromagnetism for the analysis and design of RF circuits and antennas. He has authored or coauthored Chapter 8 of the Space Antenna Handbook (Wiley, 2012), another chapter of Handbook of Modern Reflector Antennas and Feed Systems for Space and Ground Applications (Artech House, 2013), and over 40 publications in the most renowned national and international journals. He serves as a reviewer of many renowned national and international journals.


Antenna developments for space applications has a long history at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Starting from the 70’s, Voyager, Galileo, Cassini, SRTM and more recently Aquarius, SMAP, SWOT, NISAR and INCUS are just a few major flight projects that required the design and development of very complex antenna systems for telecom, radar and radiometric applications. They were, and in most cases still are, the state of the art in antenna design for space applications. In the past we mostly relied on relatively simple RF models and formulations and did a considerable amount of prototype testing to validate antenna performance. In recent years RF modeling tools like HFSSTM, GRASPTM and a few more, have reached capabilities that were unimaginable just a few years back. At the same time, computer power and available memory have been increasing steadily. Thanks to this fertile ground it’s now possible to run extremely complex RF simulations of very large structures in a relatively short time with very good results. This presentation will guide the audience through a few examples of flight projects where very complex RF models have provided extremely accurate results and allowed the development of very complex instruments, some of which are still flying today. 

Dr. Dimitrios Peroulis

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Topic: RF Plasma Circuits and Antennas

Affiliation: Senior Vice President, Purdue University Online

Reilly Professor, Elmore Family School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Purdue University


Dimitrios Peroulis (S’99–M’04–SM’15–F’17) is the Senior Vice President for Purdue University Online and the Reilly Professor of the Elmore Family School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Purdue University. From 2019-2023 he served as the Michael and Katherine Birck Head of ECE and special adviser to the Dean of Engineering on online learning. He received his PhD degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor in 2003. His research interests are focused on the areas of reconfigurable systems, plasma RF electronics, and RF-assisted lyophilization. He has been a key contributor in developing high quality widely-tunable filters and novel filter architectures based on miniaturized high-Q cavity-based resonators. He received the National Science Foundation CAREER award in 2008. He is an IEEE Fellow and has co-authored over 450 journal and conference papers. In 2019 he received the “Tatsuo Itoh” Award and in 2014 he received the Outstanding Young Engineer Award both from the IEEE Microwave Theory and Techniques Society (MTT-S). In 2012 he received the Outstanding Paper Award from the IEEE Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control Society (Ferroelectrics section). His students have received numerous student paper awards and other student research-based scholarships. He has been a Purdue University Faculty Scholar and has also received 11 teaching awards including the 2010 HKN C. Holmes MacDonald Outstanding Teaching Award and the 2010 Charles B. Murphy award, which is Purdue University's highest undergraduate teaching honor.


Plasma technology is widely used in various applications such as lighting, semiconductor manufacturing, and food processing. Recently, there have been significant developments in using plasma technology in high-frequency electronics, ranging from RF to millimeter-wave bands. This talk aims to explore the latest advancements in this field and discuss the benefits, challenges, and application space of plasma-based devices in RF technology. These devices are of particular interest in high-power applications, such as radar, radio transmission, and satellite communication, where signal control is required at the transmit side. In addition, these devices are useful for protecting sensitive circuits. We will present recent solid-state plasma electronics for high-frequency applications. Furthermore, we will discuss the exciting potential to create widely tunable antenna elements for reconfigurable plasma antenna array systems.

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