CMPE425 Fault-Tolerant Computing

ECE750 Advanced Topics in Micro- and NanoSystems


Dr. Jie Han

Office: W2-079, ECERF (ECE Research Facility)

Phone: 492-1361

Email: j.han AT


Office Hours: Tuesday and Thursday, 2:00 - 3:00pm


Course Information

Lectures: Tuesday and Thursday, 9:30 - 10:50am

Room: ETLE1 017

Website: (Enrolled students will be able to access it by logging into the eClass@UofA.)


Course Objectives

Students will learn the need and necessity to consider fault-tolerant design in nanoelectronic circuits and systems.

They will learn the fundamental concepts and techniques used in classical fault-tolerant systems.

They will also learn recent advances in fault-tolerant nanocomputing. 


Course Description

Defects in manufacturing, failure mechanisms and fault modeling

Reliability and availability theory

Hardware fault-tolerance: static and dynamic redundancy and repair

Error correcting codes and resilient disk systems

Defect tolerance in VLSI circuits

Soft errors and mitigation techniques

Fault-tolerance in nanocomputing

Checkpointing and roll-back strategies

Fault-tolerant computers and network architecture

Simulation and modeling techniques


EE280 Introduction to Digital Logic Design, EE340 Electronic Devices, EE387 Probability for Electrical and Computer Engineers, or consent of the Department.


Fault-Tolerant Systems, by I. Koren and C.M. Krishna, Morgan Kaufmann, 2007.

Architecture Design for Soft Errors, by S. Mukherjee, Morgan Kaufmann, 2009.

Reference books:

Nano, Quantum and Molecular Computing: Implications to High Level Design and Validation, Edited by S.K. Shukla and R.I. Bahar, Kluwer, 2004.

Reliable Computer Systems: Design and Evaluation, by D.P. Siewiorek and R.S. Swarz, A K Peters, 1998.

Fault-Tolerant Computer System Design, by D.K. Pradhan, Prentice Hall, 1996.

And research papers.


Marking scheme:

                                                For undergraduate students         For graduate students

Assignments:                                        10%                                                    10%

Mid-term Exams:                                 25%                                                    15%

Final Exam:                                            50%                                                     30%

Project presentation:                        15%                                                     15%

Project report:                                     N/A                                                     30%


Academic integrity

The University of Alberta is committed to the highest standards of academic integrity and honesty. Students are expected to be familiar with these standards regarding academic honesty and to uphold the policies of the University in this respect. Students are particularly urged to familiarize themselves with the provisions of the Code of Student Behavior (online at and avoid any behavior which could potentially result in suspicions of cheating, plagiarism, misrepresentation of facts and/or participation in an offense. Academic dishonesty is a serious offense and can result in suspension or expulsion from the University.

“Recording is permitted only with the prior written consent of the professor or if recording is part of an approved accommodation plan.”