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Vaughn Betz
Professor Vaughn Betz (ECE). (Photo by Jess MacInnis)

Vaughn Betz elected elected Fellow of the U.S. National Academy of Inventors

December 11, 2020

Professor Vaughn Betz of the Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering has been elected a Fellow of the U.S. National Academy of Inventors

The Academy honours academic inventors who have demonstrated “innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on the quality of life, economic development, and the welfare of society.” 

The NSERC/Intel Industrial Research Chair in Programmable Silicon and a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Betz pioneered approaches to evaluating and optimizing Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) computer chips that can be reprogrammed after manufacturing to allow for agile, reconfigurable hardware systems. They are used in a wide variety of applications, such as wireless communications, ultrasound imaging machines, automotive electronics and video broadcast. He also created a Computer-Aided Design (CAD) flow and methodology, known as Versatile Place and Route (VPR), which is now the world’s most commonly used toolset for modelling new FPGA ideas. Betz has published over 120 technical articles, one book and four book chapters on programmable logic and CAD. He holds 100 U.S. patents.  

“As an engineer, inventor and entrepreneur, Professor Betz reflects the standard of excellence for which U of T Engineering is known,” says Chris Yip, Dean of U of T Engineering. “His work has had an exceptional impact on the adoption and commercialization of FPGA technology, and on academic research worldwide.

“On behalf of the Faculty, my warmest congratulations to him on this richly deserved honour.”

Read the Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering story