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Education and Innovation in Embedded Systems Design

USI Università della Svizzera italiana, USI Faculty of Informatics, Advanced Learning and Research Institute USI Università della Svizzera italiana USI Faculty of Informatics USI Advanced Learning and Research Institute

Meyr Heinrich

Position Professor emeritus
Institution RWTH Aachen
Phone +49 241 80-27881
+49 241 80-22195
Algorithms for wireless communications - MSc
Embedded Processor Design - MSc


Dr. Heinrich Meyr


Dr. Heinrich Meyr received his M.Sc. and Ph.D. from ETH Zurich, Switzerland in 1967 and 1973, respectively. He spent over 12 years in various research and management positions in industry before accepting a professorship in electrical engineering at RWTH Aachen University in 1977. At RWTH Aachen he has founded the Institute for Integrated Signal Processing System (ISS) involved in the analysis and design of complex signal processing systems for communication applications. He implemented an innovative cooperation model between university and industry without compromising academic excellence with a highly successful fund­raising program. Major industry funding included grants from leading US and European companies.


He has retired as Professor Emeritus in 2007 but remains active as a researcher. In 2008 he was a visiting Professor at the Institute of Communication Technology of the ETH Zürich directed by Professor Helmut Bölcskei. From 2011 to March 2013 he was a visiting Professor at the LSI lab of the EPFL directed by Professor Giovanni de Micheli. In 2013 he has been appointed as an emeriti Professor of excellence in the research cluster cfAED at the TU Dresden. 


During the last thirty years, Dr. Meyr has worked extensively in the areas of communication theory, digital signal processing and CAD tools for system-level design. He pioneered cross-disciplinary research which emphasizes the interaction of the pre­viously unrelated areas of algorithm design ("theory"), VLSI-architecture ("imple­mentation"), and design methodology ("tools") in the late 80´s. He has made significant contributions or defined and guided research in all three areas mentioned above. He and his students contributed innovative designs of Viterbi- and MAP decoders; they implemented one of the first DVB-S (1997) and DVB-T (2000) receiver chips. In 2010 they implemented the first sphere decoder (2010) with soft-input-soft-output capability for 4x4 MIMO transmission.  In 2012 they implemented  the the first complete iterative receiver chip comprising of a sphere-and LDPC decoder. In the tools area a large research effort led to the tool suites COSSAP and LISATek. These tool suites are among the few ones which have made the transition from academic research to industrialization.  In communication theory significant contribution were made in the nonlinear theory of PPL, synchronization and channel estimation.  The book, “Digital Communication Receivers”, J.Wiley, 1998 is the standard work in this area.  It is used worldwide in academia and has over 1400 citation in “Harzing´s Publish or Perrish” It is equally widespread found in industrial labs worldwide.

In 1998 and 2000 he was a visiting scholar at UC Berkeley´s wireless research centre.

Dr. Meyr has received three IEEE best paper awards. He is a Life-Fellow IEEE .He is the recipient of the prestigious “Vodafone Innovation Prize” for the year 2000.


Dr .Meyr has a dual career as entrepreneur. He is a co-founder of CADIS (acquired 1993 by Synopsys, Mountain View, California) a company which commercialized the tool suite COSSAP. After the acquisition of CADIS a separate branch of CADIS has lead to the formation of an independent company, ATECOM which was acquired by Globespan Virata in 2001.He is also a co-founder of AXYS which has been acquired by ARM the year 2000. In 2002 he co-founded LISATek Inc., a company with breakthrough technology to design application specific processors. In February 2004 LISATek has merged with CoWare Inc, San Jose.  At CoWare Dr. Meyr accepted the position of Chief Scientist Officer. In 2010 CoWare has been acquired by Synopsys, the most successful EDA company worldwide. The technology based on research at ISS and commercialized by CoWare now is the core of the system level design tools of Synopsys. Dr. Meyr has also been a board member of large international companies located in Switzerland and the US.

Today, he serves also as a member of the advisory board of start- up´s.




Private Activities

I am an active glider pilot with many hours of experience and a reasonably good flying record. I am the owner of an ASH-25M. The ASH-25M  is a high performance two-seater with a glide ratio of 1:57. In the view of almost everybody it is one of the most beautiful plane ever built and a dream to fly.