Seminars and Events

Heterogeneous and Non-Traditional Computing Seminar Series

Photonic ASICs for Machine Intelligence

Event Details


The time of this seminar has been updated to 9AM PST (12PM EST) to accommodate a scheduling conflict. The date remains Dec. 8th.


The rapid growing demand for AI services in conjunction with a dramatic chip shortage along with technology leaps such as 5/6G networks, cybersecurity threats, and quantum algorithms have resurrected a R&D push for advanced information processing and computing capability. To address these challenges, unique opportunities exist, for example, given by algorithmic parallelism of digital-analog hybrid non-van Neuman accelerators. Especially photonic-electronic ASIC compute paradigms hold the promise to enable non-iterative O(1) runtime complexity, ps-short latency, and TOPS/W throughputs. This opens prospects for next-generation hardware both for AI cloud services but also for accelerating edge computing such as enabled by compact and efficient PIC-CMOS co-designs pushing the SWAP envelope. As both a professor and a co-founder of a deep-tech venture, in this seminar I will share my insights on fundamental complexity scaling and algorithm-hardware homomorphism on the one hand, and system-level synergies and co- design optimization strategies on the other. I will introduce a novel photonic RAM capable of zero-static power consumption suitable for edge applications and a photonic tensor core accelerator leveraging WDM parallelism. Beyond matrix-matrix multiplication acceleration, I will show how convolutions can be accelerated as simple dot-product multiplications in the Fourier domain and using display light technology enables 1000×1000 matrix convolutions at 100us latency, or about 10x faster than today’s GPUs.

Host: Mike Haney <[email protected]>

Zoom:  (Meeting ID: 946 8636 6870)

Please join the zoom meeting using your @USC.EDU Zoom account if possible.

Speaker Bio

Volker J. Sorger is an Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the Director of the Photonics & AI and Technology Laboratory at the George Washington University. He is also a co-founder and President of the deep-tech venture Optelligence Company. For his work, Dr. Sorger received multiple awards among are the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), the AFOSR Young Investigator Award (YIP), the Hegarty Innovation Prize, and the National Academy of Sciences award of the year. Dr. Sorger is an Associate editor for OPTICA and the former editor-in-chief of NANOPHOTONICS. He served at the boards of both OSA & SPIE and is a senior member of IEEE, OSA & SPIE. For further details visit and