PCB Technology Leadership Awards

Mentor has announced its 27th annual PCB Technology Leadership Awards. Started in 1988, this program is the longest running competition of its kind in the electronic design automation (EDA) industry. It recognizes engineers and designers who use innovative methods and design tools to address today’s complex PCB systems design challenges and produce industry-leading products.

Prominent experts in the PCB industry judged entries from around the world in categories that represent a wide variety of industries:

  • Computers, blade and servers, memory systems
  • Industrial control, instrumentation, security and medical
  • Military and aerospace
  • Telecom, network controllers, line cards
  • Transportation and automotive

The PCB Technology Leadership Awards contest was open to any designs created with Mentor PCB solutions. Judging is based on design complexity and overcoming associated challenges, such as small form factor, high-speed protocols, multi-discipline team collaboration, advanced PCB fabrication technologies, and design-cycle time reduction.

The expert judges included Michael R. Creeden, San Diego PCB CEO and founder; Gary Ferrari, FTG Circuits technical support director; Rick Hartley, RHartley Enterprises principal engineer; Steve Herbstman, SHLC founder and lead designer; Happy Holden, Gentex Corporation (retired); Andy Kowalewski, Metamelko LP senior interconnect designer; Pete Waddell, president of UP Media and publisher of Printed Circuit Design & Fab/Circuits Assembly Magazine; and Susy Webb, Fairfield Nodal senior PCB designer.

2017 Technology Leadership Award Winners
Category: Best Overall Design

  • Company: Fujitsu Augsburg
  • Design team: Simon Czermak, Michael Schreittmiller, Sergej Beljaev, Andreas Titz, Mario Lanteri, Markus Wicher, Werner Hasubick, Peter Bräu, Nikola Skordev, Dieter Feiger
  • Using: Xpedition Enterprise
The best overall winner of the 2017 Mentor PCB Technology Leadership Awards is the team from Fujitsu Augsburg for their design of a high-performance computing mainboard. (PRNewsfoto/Mentor, a Siemens business)

The best overall winner of the 2017 Mentor PCB Technology Leadership Awards is the team from Fujitsu Augsburg for their design of a high-performance computing mainboard. (PRNewsfoto/Mentor, a Siemens business)

Category:  Computers, Blade & Servers, Memory Systems

  • 1st place: Adcom
  • Design team: Moshe Frid, Alon Kukuliansky, Nitzan Habler, Eli Moshe, Haim Anava, Doron K’Eliyahu, Lior Elgazar
  • Using: Xpedition Enterprise
  • 2nd place: ASELSAN
  • Design team: Ahmet Erol, Fulya Ağirnas, Fatih Say, Emine Özer Türkay, Mustafa Algan
  • Using: Xpedition Enterprise

Category: Industrial Control, Instrumentation, Security & Medical

  • 1st place: Shenzhen Mindray
  • Design team: Hupeng, Ouyangyilong, Zhaoguolong, Yiyong, Suchaoxun
  • Using: Xpedition Enterprise
  • 2nd place: Murrelektronik GmbH
  • Design team: Matthias Haak, Simon De Serra
  • Using: PADS

Category: Military & Aerospace

  • 1st place: Curtiss-Wright
  • Design team: Ashleye Soanes, Pascal Sauvé, Luc Bouchard, Stephen Reich
  • Using: Xpedition Enterprise
  • 2nd place: Thales Alenia Space Italy
  • Design team: Enrico Checchi, Gabriele Rocco, Giovanni Saldi
  • Using: Xpedition Enterprise/li>

Category: Telecom, Network Controllers, Line Cards

  • 1st place: Altice Labs
  • Design team: Alfonso Figueiredo, Carlos Monica, Victor Soares, Luis Tavares
  • Using: Xpedition Enterprise
  • 2nd place: Coriant Oy
  • Design team: Sauli Kunnas, Peter Kokko, Hannu Saarikoski, Paavo Perälä, Sami Jokinen, Juha Sarapelto, Jyrki Vuorinen, Jycke Sulka-aho, Matti Pulkkinen, Jyrki Nyyssönen, Päivi Vallin, Juha Ahvenainen
  • Using: Xpedition Enterprise

Category: Transportation & Automotive

  • 1st place: Yanfeng Visteon Electronics Technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd
  • Design team: Yuan Li, Yan Xue, Tao Wang, Qin Li
  • Using: Xpedition Enterprise
  • 2nd place: Sienna Ecad Technologies Pvt Ltd
  • Designer: Krishna Murthy BS, Raghava Charyulu V, Savita R Ganjigatti
  • Using: PADS

Mentor |  www.mentor.com

Mandalas Blend Technology and Spirituality

Multimedia artist Leonardo Ulian’s work includes his stunning “Technological Mandala” series, in which he precisely arranges tiny electrical and computer components to create colorful and symmetrical mandalas. In Hindu and Buddhist cultures, a mandala is a geometric and spiritual artwork representing the universe and is used in meditation. In this interview, Leonardo discusses his background, artwork, and inspiration for blending technological and ephemeral themes.—Mary Wilson, Managing Editor

 

MARY: Where were you born and how long have you lived in London?

LEONARDO: I come from a little village called Ruda, situated in the northeast region of Italy, Friuli-Venezia Giulia. I have lived in London since 2004.

Technological Mandala 17: Electronic components, copper wire, paper, 72 cm x 72 cm, 2013 (closeup),

Technological Mandala 17: Electronic components, copper wire, paper, 72 cm x 72 cm, 2013 (closeup). (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

MARY: I understand you started out pursuing a degree in micro-electronics, then trained as a graphic designer before earning a fine arts degree. Can you tell me about your education and what made you turn your training toward the arts?

LEONARDO: My first attempt to do art was more related to the activity of just making things. Since I was very young, I always liked to play with hammers, nails, pieces of wood, and other bits and pieces in order to make my own little toys. But more than anything else, I liked to open old radios to see what was hiding inside.

In the 1980s, I attended an electronics school, also because I was fascinated by the new technology revolution of that period. I do remember myself stuck in front of the television watching an American TV series about robots, computers, and all that sort of stuff. While I was studying electronics I attended an art course and I specialized in airbrush hyper-realistic painting techniques. I then studied graphic design and I worked as a graphic designer and photo-retoucher for several years until I moved to London where I obtained my BA degree in fine art.

Technological Mandala 17: Electronic components, copper wire, paper, 72 cm x 72 cm, 2013.

Technological Mandala 17: Electronic components, copper wire, paper, 72 cm x 72 cm, 2013.

MARY: How did you come up with the idea for the “Technological Mandala” series? What was your inspiration and what are you trying to convey with these pieces that solder together electrical components, circuitry, and microchips?

LEONARDO: I liked the idea of combining different worlds such as spirituality and mandalas with technology and underlining the fact that electronic technology devices have become fundamental for our daily lives, almost something to worship.

I am also fascinated by the pure exercise of geometry used for the construction of the traditional mandalas—an ordered representation that is used to explain something that probably has nothing to do with geometry, which is the meaning of everything we perceive around us as living beings. I guess my artistic and spiritual research have led me to discover the world of mandalas.

I am not a spiritual person, or at least not in the traditional manner. And I am not particularly polarized with a specific belief. But I do like the idea of a world made with infinite connections among persons, objects, or places, like the connections I make in my technological mandalas. I also like to believe that what happens in one of the parts of the connection can affect the others as well.

Electronic components have always fascinated me; there was something in them that has attracted my fantasy since I was very young. I always asked myself how these little things were able to do what they do within electronic devices. After my studies in fine art, I started to think about my old passions and interests in a different way. This is why now, in my eyes, the electronic components have lost their real functionality in order to become ephemeral objects able to trigger the eyes and minds of the viewers, but in a different manner.

Technological Mandala 38: Electronic components, white Perspex, triple mounting board, 60 x 60 cm, 2013 (close up).

Technological Mandala 38: Electronic components, white Perspex, triple mounting board, 60 cm x 60 cm, 2013 (close-up). (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

MARY:  Can you describe how you created the pieces? The materials and techniques you used?

LEONARDO: I make the basic geometry design in a computer. I print the resulting image onto paper, and then I bring in countless electronic components—some recycled but most bought from online websites—to fill in the shape I have created. I spend hours online researching nice and colorful electronic components. The difficulty is that nowadays technology is moving toward miniaturizing the electronic components, and quite often they do not have any color code.

MARY: You started the series two years ago. Is it now complete?

LEONARDO: The series isn’t yet completed, it’s a work in progress and I do not know when it will be finished. I guess the series is evolving as the technology—especially the electronic one—is changing rapidly.

Technological Mandala 02 (the beginning). Electronic components, microchip, wood frame, 120 x 20 cm, 2012.

Technological Mandala 02 (the beginning). Electronic components, microchip, wood frame, 120 cm x 20 cm, 2012. (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

MARY: Do you have other artwork, such as “Technological Mandala,” that presents technology in an unconventional and thought-provoking way? Can you tell me more about that work?

LEONARDO: One of my early pieces is called “Now and Forever.” It’s an old petrol lantern modified in order to have, instead of the real flame, a mini-LCD screen with a video of it. The virtual flame within the mini screen is powered by a DVD player instead of the petrol, and it could run forever—or at least until there is no longer electricity available.

"Now and Forever" (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

“Now and Forever” (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

MARY: What technologies most interest you? Do any of them intrigue you as inspiration for future projects? If so, how might you use them?

LEONARDO: I do not have a particular interest in a specific piece of technology; I like to pick up things that stimulate my imagination. But, among other things, I am fascinated by magnetic fields and how the spectator could interact with them in order to generate art.

The piece “Close to the Essence” explores my interest in magnetic fields. It is a system of elements, like a hi-fi system, that becomes a totem able to interact with the spectator. The whole structure becomes a giant theremin I made using three simple AM radios, and the sound generated by the sculpture varies according to the proximity of the viewers.

"Close to the Essence" (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

“Close to the Essence” (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

MARY: What project are you currently focusing on?

LEONARDO: At the moment I am focused on further developing the idea started with the “Technological Mandala” series.

MARY: Do you have a dream project, something you are resolved to do sometime during your artistic career?

LEONARDO: I do not have a specific dream project, although my sketchbooks are full of ideas. I try to work day by day in order to produce things I am happy with. I have to say that almost always I have doubts about the things I make, but this keeps me going forward to create the next piece.

Technological Mandala 05: Electronic components, microchip, wood frame, 60 x 57 cm, 2012. (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

Technological Mandala 05: Electronic components, microchip, wood frame, 60 cm x 57 cm, 2012. (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

'Dardoby"

“Dardoby” (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

MARY: You are a self-described multimedia artist. Can you tell me about some of your other artistic pursuits, including The Apathy Band you co-founded?

LEONARDO: I do like to think that art can explore different fields, as the great master Leonardo da Vinci did in his practice. The Apathy Band is an open project created by the artists Bob and Roberta Smith and I am one of the co-founders. The instruments I play in the band are toys I have accurately modified, like old electronic keyboards or electronic gizmos and animated toys. Two examples are the Dardomin, a theremin I created using AM radios, and the Dardoby, a circuit-bent Furby toy puppet I use to generate unexpected sound. I have also collaborated with the artistic duo Marotta & Russo to create the soundtracks of their videos. (Refer to “Timeline” and “Netopia.”)

Leonardo Ulian has had numerous solo exhibitions in London and elsewhere. He is the recipient of the Owen Rowley Award, London (UK), and the Italian national prize Stamps of the XX Century. You can follow Leonardo on Twitter at @ulianleonardo.

Technological Mandala 29: Electronic components, copper wire, paper, 120 cm x 120 cm, 2013. (Photo courtesy of Leonoard Ulian)

Technological Mandala 29: Electronic components, copper wire, paper, 120 cm x 120 cm, 2013. (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

 

Centrical Bonsai Tree: Electronic components, cement and steel base, 135 cm x 35 cm x 35 cm, 2013 (close-up).

Centrical Bonsai: Tree, electronic components, cement and steel base, 135 cm x 35 cm x 35 cm, 2013 (close-up). (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)

Centrical Bonsai Tree: Electronic components, cement and steel base, 135 cm x 35 cm x 35 cm, 2013 (close-up).

Centrical Bonsai: Tree, electronic components, cement and steel base, 135 cm x 35 cm x 35 cm, 2013. (Photo courtesy of Leonardo Ulian)