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In April 2014, Horizon House, Microwave Journal and ACT International will host the second Electronic Design Innovation Conference (EDI CON) in Beijing, China. This annual event offers an industry-centric technical program on the latest technologies and techniques available to commercial organizations and academia addressing high-frequency electronic design and system integration. After a highly-successful debut this year, this technical conference and exhibition will expand its size and scope next year, adding a full third day to the technical program and nearly doubling the exhibition of test & measurement, design software, component, semiconductor device, materials and cable/connector manufacturers and semiconductor foundries. The event will bring together engineers engaged in RF/microwave, high-speed digital and EMI/EMC design with technologists offering information and products to help them achieve greater design success.

The conference program will consist of peer-reviewed papers from across the globe presented in four technical tracks: Design, Measurement & Modeling, System Engineering and Commercial Resources. In addition, the conference will feature industry-focused workshops and technical panels as well as plenary keynote talks examining the broader market and technology trends in high frequency systems, semiconductors, test and component design. Workshops and panels will cover the hot topics that concern today’s engineers as determined by the industry itself. Building on this year’s popular talks, conference organizers are anticipating content that will focus on developments in GaN, highly integrated front ends, RF CMOS, envelope tracking and DPD techniques, carrier aggregation, cognitive radio and high- speed channel design, to name a few.

In areas where participating companies offer alternative solutions, special panels are being organized to present alternate perspectives on topics such as optimal device characterization techniques, design software needs, design-to-production testing and the role of modular instruments, over-the-air testing, selecting the “right” semiconductor technology and foundry services, etc. EDI CON panels and workshops will examine high- frequency electronic engineering in the context of today’s changing communication standards and component requirements.

MWJ publisher Carl Sheffres and I traveled to Shanghai and Beijing last month to meet with EDI CON sponsors, potential exhibitors and speakers. Meeting directly with OEMs, component manufacturers, distributors, marketers and representatives from academia and several technical societies has provided insights into the leading trends in China’s telecommunication market and the global supply chain. By working with organizations engaged in China, EDI CON is better able to identify and attract its targeted audience and ensure that the conference content is of the highest interest and relevancy.

Thanks to the success of the first year’s event, EDI CON 2014 intends to double the exhibition space. Next year’s event will feature a West Hall for test and measurement solutions and software providers and an East Hall for integrated device and active/passive component manufacturers, material providers and manufacturing services, cable assembly and connector manufacturers, semiconductor foundries and distributers. Organizers will be working with all exhibitors to ensure that the exhibition itself is well-integrated into the overall educational opportunities being offered. In-booth product demonstrations and tutorials will be encouraged and promoted to delegates. While North American and European engineers are very familiar with the professional RF/microwave exhibition, opportunities for a skilled local and international technical staff to interact directly with engineers at a professional exhibition is a relatively new occurrence in China and was extremely well-received at this year’s event. Next year’s event date will allow companies to re-introduce products released at early season trade shows (DesignCon, Mobile World Congress, Autotestcon, etc.) to the Chinese engineer. As a result of this year’s success, new and returning exhibitors have committed to participating in next April’s event and the exhibition hall is expected to sell out early.

This is a very exciting time in the expansion of microwave technology across the globe. As we covered in our lead story last May, telecommunication equipment deployments throughout Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Latin America are creating global engineer- ing opportunities. Microwave Journal China and EDI CON will play a leading role in helping companies across the globe interface with design engineers and system integrators operating in China. With the print Chinese version now at 10,000 qualified readers and over 2,000 attendees from the first year’s event, a beachhead for our industry to exchange information with this market is now well-established. We anticipate 2014 will build on this foundation and lead to new opportunities for all who participate.