If you are planning to attend the technical conference at this year’s IMS and just received your technical program book, you may be overwhelmed by the volume of content presented. There were, after all, 430 papers accepted (294 oral presentations and 136 interactive forums). In addition, there are 30 workshops, five short courses and one rump session. Whew!

Recognizing that one can’t be in two places at the same time, the technical committee spent considerable time and effort trying to minimize scheduling conflicts. Still, with this much content stuffed into six days, one might have to resort to a coin toss. The committee also worked to spread out the conference so that attendance did not fall off toward the end of the week. In other words, good stuff right through the end.

IMS or Microwave Week is made up of three conferences: RFIC, which provides a focus on wireless and wireline communication ICs; ARFTG, dedicated to RF and microwave test and measurement techniques; and, of course IMS, which has a focus on almost any technology happening at RF, microwave and millimeter-wave frequencies.

The week starts with workshops and short courses on Sunday and Monday. Monday also features the start of the RFIC technical sessions, which spill over into Tuesday along with the RFIC interactive forum. Tuesday through Thursday belongs largely to IMS (along with some joint sessions with the RFIC and ARFTG conferences). With such a broad range of materials, the IMS technical program organizers created the following four tracks to manage the content and allow attendees to easily pick out their area of interest from a sea of sessions and forums.

The microwave modeling track (color coded green in the program) includes talks on nonlinear circuit and system analysis, CAD algorithms, field analysis and EM simulation, time/frequency domain, nonlinear modeling, optimization and modeling novel devices such as metamaterials. The active components track (red) includes CMOS, millimeter-wave (including Terahertz) devices, power amplifiers, switching architectures, LNAs, signal control and sources, semiconductor devices, ICs and GaN. The passive components track (yellow) includes transmission lines, ferrites, combiners, hybrids, multiplexers, passive structures, MEMS, acoustic wave devices and, of course, filters. The microwave system track (blue) includes front-ends, communication systems, smart antennas, phased arrays and radar, bio and medical systems, test and measurement, photonics and various system-level packaging sessions and forums. This is but a high level view of the hundreds of talks being presented.

The technical sessions take place in the morning and afternoon, panel sessions are held during the lunch hour and each day has an overlapping series of interactive forums that run from 9:20 in the morning to 3:40 in the afternoon. Friday concludes with the ARFTG conference and additional workshops. There is also considerable student participation (competition), focus and special sessions, and a plenary session. Choose your sessions wisely and make sure you save some time to get down to the exhibition floor. See you there.