Minutes of the 10th LHC Electronics Board held on 5th November 1998

Present:

Apologies: F. Corsi, V. Radeka, W. Smith except point 3a), U. Straumann, G. Viertel.

1. L. Foà reminded the Board that his term of office as CERN Director of Research terminates at the end of 1998, and that his
    successor will be Prof. R. Cashmore.

    L. Foà expressed his appreciation of the Board's work, underlining its important role in the design and construction of the
    LHC experiments and by organizing the annual workshop and providing a forum for regular, common technical discussions.
    The Chairman of the Board thanked L. Foà for his continued support and interest in the Board's work.

2. Analysis of the Rome Workshop

    C. Decosse distributed first copies of the Proceedings of the Rome Workshop CERN/LHCC 98-36) from a
    small-volume print pre-run, and asked Board members for feedback and final corrections before the full-volume
    print run is made.  The Board expressed its appreciation of the promptness with which the Proceedings had been
    produced and congratulated Catherine Decosse on her achievement.

    The Chairman thanked E. Petrolo and the local organizing committee for having organized a very successful workshop.
    The Board discussed possible changes for the next workshop that would encourage improved coverage of less "popular"
    issues, and give even more emphasis to panel/discussion sessions.

3. Organization of Future LEB Workshops

3 a) LEB Workshop 1999:
    By means of a video conference session W. Smith presented a proposal to hold the 1999 LEB workshop in the
    USA at Breckenridge1 85 miles from Denver, in the Rockies), 20-24 September 1999.  Volunteer members of a
    local organizing committee had been found W. Smith, J. Elias, V. Radeka, plus administrative and secretarial
    support from FNAL, RAL and CERN).  After careful consideration of the details conference centre facilities,
    transport, accommodation, costs, etc.) the Board approved the proposal and asked the local organizing committee 
    to proceed with the detailed organization.  Board members are requested to solicit companies for sponsoring and/or
    providing an industry exhibit.

    1 Note that the LEB later decided to switch the location to Snowmass, in the Colorado Rockies.

    Action ----- > All members to contact companies for sponsorship and/or industrial exhibits.

3 b) LEB Workshop 2000 and its relation to the IEEE International Symposium on Radiation
       Instrumentation, Lyon, October 2000:
    For the first time ever the IEEE will hold its annual Nuclear Science Symposium and Medical Imaging Conference
    in Europe Lyon) in October 2000.  The General Chairman of the Lyon 2000 Organizing Committee, P. LeDu CEA-Saclay),
    has proposed to combine the LEB 2000 workshop with the IEEE conference.  After discussing the pros and cons of this
    proposal, the Board was concerned that the nature of the LEB workshop was not totally compatible with the large
    IEEE conference event.  In particular, the LEB workshop aims at encouraging a maximum of discussion on common,
    or critical, issues for the LHC, and this aspect might be in danger of being lost in the context of the larger IEEE conference,
    which has traditionally offered less opportunities for extended discussion.  Nevertheless, the Board wishes to explore
    possible synergies between the two events without sacrificing the objectives of the LEB workshop.
 

   Action ----- > P. Sharp to explore with P. LeDu a proposal for a synergy between IEEE conference
                     and LEB workshop.

4. RD12 - Timing, Trigger and Control TTC) Systems for LHC Detectors
    Status Report presented by B. Taylor)

    The Board considered that the RD12 project has well met the milestones defined after the previous status report May 1997).
    In particular very good progress has been made in clarifying and meeting the TTC requirements of each of the LHC
    collaborations.  The Board agreed that the proposed programme of work for the next year is well focussed onto these
    requirements and should be continued.

    The Board felt that there was now a need for management to define a new type of common project framework in order
    to allow successful R&D projects, such as RD12, to transit towards longer-term missions addressing:

    The definition of a new structure for post-R&D common projects would guarantee their continuity in the best interests
    of the LHC collaborations. The LEB should continue to monitor and regularly review such projects.

5. RD29 - DMILL, a Mixed Analog-Digital Radiation Hard Technology for High Energy Physics Electronics.
    Final Status Report by M. Dentan)

    The Board acknowledged that the RD29 project had fully reached its objective of developing a rad-hard BiCMOS SOI
    process DMILL) to meet the demanding requirements of High Energy Physics experiments.  The Atmel-Temic group
    now offers industrial foundry services for the DMILL process, and an approved design-kit and MPW service is provided
    via IMEC.  The residual problems encountered by Temic in fully meeting the post-irradiation specifications for some
    parameters gain of bipolar devices and resistors) are now resolved.

    The DMILL consortium has officially accepted the transfer of the process to Temic in accordance with the terms defined
    in the technology transfer agreement.  The RD29 collaboration proposes to terminate the project now that all objectives
    have been achieved. Nevertheless, if needed, the CEA has foreseen to provide some manpower to help resolve unexpected
    problems that may materialize with the DMILL technology.

    The Board congratulates the DMILL Consortium on an exceptionally fruitful collaboration, that has provided HEP with
    a customized technology meeting the requirements for electronics in the most severe radiation environments of the LHC
    experiments.

6. RD48 - R&D On Silicon for Future Experiments
    Status Report by F. Lemeilleur)

    The Board agreed that it is desirable that RD48 should continue R&D into the hardening of detector silicon by
    controlling impurities.  However, there was some concern that the proposed programme of work for 1999 needs
    focussing in order to be realistically achievable within the human and financial resources likely to be available to the
    collaboration.  The Board recommends that the various proposed activities should be prioritized, taking into account:

    a)    the likelihood that commercial silicon manufacturers will accept to modify their processes in-line with the RD48 findings,

    b)   whether the results and their commercial-scale implementation could be available on a timescale compatible with that
            for the construction of the LHC detectors.

    Action ----- > Electronics coordinators of ATLAS, CMS and LHCb to seek advice of tracker
                         communities in view of focussing the RD48 milestones.

7. AOB

a) Coordinating the selection of radiation-tolerant COTS components for LHC

    P. Borgeaud raised again the issue of the selection and qualification of Commercial-Off-The-Shelf COTS) components
    for the construction of radiation-tolerant electronic systems for the calorimeters and muon detectors of ATLAS and CMS.

    Selecting and reliably qualifying a component for its radiation tolerance is an expensive and time-consuming process.
    In most cases, once a suitable component has been identified, it should be followed up by a non-conventional procurement
    procedure purchasing only components from exactly the same manufacturing lot as the tested samples).  This risk-
    management strategy implies the need for a special relationship with the vendor and also results in some additional costs.

    Some of the LHC development teams are well aware of these issues, whereas others are not.  The risks and the burden
    associated with COTS procurement could be reduced if existing knowledge and effort could be shared, and if the
    collaborations identified a common set of COTS components.  One way, which has been proposed, is for the collaborations
    to consult external experts in radiation-tolerant COTS procurement.  Awareness of these issues within the collaborations is not
    yet widespread, nor has it reached a level where management can define a concerted policy - e.g. a specific offer for such
    consultation from experts at the Sandia National Labs has not so far been taken up by the collaborations.

    Another way would be to initiate a project with the aim of better coordinating the COTS qualification efforts of those
    individual teams who are addressing the problem, to collect their results and make them available through a centralized
    database.  Such a common project could fall into the scope of RD49, but is more in the nature of support than R&D,
    and is therefore another potential candidate for the new type of post-R&D common project proposed by the Board in
    Section 4 above.

    Action ----- > M. Letheren requested to work with RD49 to formulate a proposal for a common
                        project to coordinate COTS qualification & procurement.

b) Status of market surveys and calls for tender for foundry services in rad-hard technologies
     and deep-submicron technologies

    Responses have been received for two market surveys issued by CERN:

    Companies qualifying as a result of the above mentioned market surveys will now be invited to tender for the provision
    of the corresponding foundry services through an extendible frame agreement.  At the date of the LEB meeting
    5 November 1998) the commercial and technical documents for the call for tender for quarter micron foundry services
    were completed, and the corresponding documents for the rad-hard foundry service were very near to completion.
    In the interests of converging rapidly on a mutually acceptable document, the breadth and complexity of the technical
    specifications of this rad-hard tender have been deliberated restricted to the requirements of the electronics to be installed
    in the tracking detectors of CMS and ATLAS.

c) Next meeting

    The Board agreed to call an unscheduled meeting on 11 December 1998 in order to follow up on the action points in
    these minutes.   Additional agenda items would be the organization of the year 1999 and 2000 workshops and a report from
    G. Viertel, Chairman of the Advisory Committee for Electronics Support ACES), followed by a discussion on the
    harmonization of the activities of the two committees.

d) Proposed dates of LEB meetings in 1999

    The following dates are proposed for LEB meetings in 1999 open to discussion at the next LEB meeting on 11 December 1998):