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Statement of Purpose
While working for five years as an engineer in a defense company in Korea, I spent a lot of time on researching in the field of embedded systems. I enjoyed working, but I could not help thinking that the work environment of the company that pressures employees to yield productive results and benefits in a short period of time rather than explore and create new ideas limits my potential. Meanwhile, I happened to work with scholars and graduate students in the form of industry-university research collaboration and their theoretical advice helped the whole process go smoothly from beginning to end. Through this experience, I realized what makes a competitive engineer is not only valuable experience from working in industry, but theoretical perspectives in engineering that are congruent with that experience. This opportunity led me decide to continue my academic career in a graduate school.
My interest in embedded system and developing practical devices began in my undergraduate years. While I participated in the academic club that primarily studies embedded systems, I had a chance to present my project on implementing JPEG by using FPGA at the conference of IC Design Education Center and led my team to receive an Excellence Award. I found it attractive how embedded systems can be applied to almost all electronic devices and started exploring more about real-time signal and data processing.
This effort continued even after I got a job. I accomplished two major projects while I was working in A company, a South Korean aerospace manufacturer and defense company. The first project was called, “FMCW Proximity Fuze.” It was a very exciting experience for me to create new devices and logics by using new algorithms that I made based on embedded system and to use a hardware tool, Active-HDL. The new device that I created, “Simulated Proximity Fuze Board”, analyzes signal processing algorithms and generates jamming signals in controlling several chips, such as DSP (Digital Signal Processor), DDS (Direct Digital Synthesis), ADC (Analog-Digital Convert) and DAC (Digital-Analog Converter) and Vertex5 FPGA. The other project was called “GPS Jammer” and in this project, I analyzed the GPS/INS data set and learned how to collect and process GPS/INS in embedded systems through confusing previously programmed directions. Therefore, I recognized the importance of such research that may improve the performance and accuracy of the position.
Through these projects, which required me to verify my work through software programs such as C and C++, I acquired an overall perspective of both hardware implement and software engineering and these projects greatly strengthen my conceptual knowledge about handling real-time digital signal processing in embedded systems. As even a little error or mistake can prevent a decisive victory in the war, these projects enabled me to dig deeper into fault tolerance and detection algorithm, one of the factors making defensive weapons more effective by responding in real time to signals and publish one paper and three posters in domestic. Most importantly, over the five years, I learned a great lesson that teamwork is an essential element to succeed. Without sharing ideas and strategies with my colleagues, I could have been able to complete any of the projects I was involved in and broaden my knowledge. Team projects have ensured the all development of my personality and I am ready to listen to others with an open mind.
Although rapidly handling a large amount of data seems very important in recent research, using fault tolerance and detection can also be a valid and useful research subject in the future academy. Digital signal processing without fault tolerance and detection is difficult to be suitably used because any functional error in a high-performance system may seriously jeopardize the operation of the system and its data integrity. If I have a chance to study in he University of A and to acquire research skills and experience in the field of embedded system, I would research that FPGA role of hybrid FPGA-CPU computational components in embedded system can be great solution to increase performance of fault tolerance because FPGA can be used role of fault detection while CPU is carrying out role of themselves.
Since South Korea is the only divided nation in the world, continuing research on defensive weapon is critical for related industry and my country. Upon receiving my Master degree, I intend to apply my knowledge that to be used by many engineers and researchers, not just for my own thesis and personal development. I heard that ECE department in The University of A has been researching some projects that will be used to create military application which propels me to study implementations of microprocessor in a graduate school.
The University of A, where I think not only offers a good environment for study by providing in-depth coursework, but promotes diverse perspectives of computer engineering. I am confident my exposure to such initiatives would quite augment my knowledge base and add tremendous value in enabling me to realize my definitive goals in The University of A.