Using Advanced Electronics to Secure Supply Chains

Wednesday, 3 April 2019

Mr. Serge Leef (DARPA), Microsystems Technology Office (MTO), Program Manager Delivers Keynote Speech


DARPA invested in the SHIELD program to provide a unique and encrypted identification for secure supply chain management, mainly for electronic components.  SHIELD incorporates a microscopic IC into the packaging. These fragile and hard-to-replicate “dielets,” at a unit cost of around $0.01, deter fraudulent product threats by increasing the cost and difficulty of counterfeiting. SHIELD enables authentication of genuine items and to better identify and respond to likely counterfeit attempts. This talk will review the motivation, technology and opportunities for deployment and applications across commercial and military use cases.

Mr. Serge Leef joined DARPA in August 2018 as a program manager in the Microsystems Technology Office (MTO). His research interests include computer architecture, simulation, synthesis, semiconductor intellectual property (IP), cyber-physical modeling, distributed systems, secure design flows, and supply chain management. He is also interested in the facilitation of startup ecosystems and business aspects of technology.

Leef came to DARPA from Mentor, a Siemens Business where from 2010 until 2018 he was a Vice President of New Ventures, responsible for identifying and developing technology and business opportunities in systems-oriented markets. Additionally, from 1999 to 2018, he served as a division General Manager, responsible for defining strategies and building successful businesses around design automation products in the areas of hardware/software co-design, multi-physics simulation, IP integration, SoC optimization, design data management, automotive/aerospace networking, cloud-based electronic design, Internet of Things (IoT) infrastructure, and hardware cybersecurity.

Prior to joining Mentor, he was responsible for design automation at Silicon Graphics, where he and his team created revolutionary, high-speed simulation tools to enable the design of high-speed 3D graphics chips, which defined the state-of-the-art in visualization, imaging, gaming, and special effects for a decade. Prior to that, he managed a CAE/CAD organization at Microchip and developed functional and physical design and verification tools for major 8- and 16-bit microcontroller and microprocessor programs at Intel.

Leef received his Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering and Master of Science degree in computer science from Arizona State University. He has served on corporate, state, and academic advisory boards, delivered numerous public speeches, and holds two patents.