Robert H. Dennard

Robert Dennard (born September 5, 1932) is an American electrical engineer and inventor.

Robert H. Dennard
Dr. Robert H. Dennard, IBM Fellow, beside his drawing of a DRAM cell (circuit schematic)
BornSeptember 5, 1932 (1932-09-05) (age 87)
AwardsHarvey Prize (1990)
IEEE Edison Medal (2001)
IEEE Medal of Honor (2009)
Kyoto Prize (2013)

Dennard was born in Terrell, Texas, U.S.. He received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering from Southern Methodist University, Dallas, in 1954 and 1956, respectively. He earned a Ph.D. from Carnegie Institute of Technology in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1958. His professional career was spent as a researcher for International Business Machines.

In 1966 he invented dynamic random-access memory (DRAM), for which a patent was issued in 1968. Dennard was also among the first to recognize the tremendous potential of downsizing MOSFETs. The scaling theory he and his colleagues formulated in 1974 postulated that MOSFETs continue to function as voltage-controlled switches while all key figures of merit such as layout density, operating speed, and energy efficiency improve – provided geometric dimensions, voltages, and doping concentrations are consistently scaled to maintain the same electric field. This property underlies the achievement of Moore's Law and the evolution of microelectronics over the last few decades.

Awards and honors

See also


  1. Taft, Darryl K. (June 24, 2013). "IBM Researcher Wins Kyoto Prize for DRAM Invention". eWeek. Retrieved June 24, 2013.
  2. "Edison Medal", Awards, IEEE, 2001.
  3. Benjamin Franklin Medal in Electrical Engineering, Franklin Institute, 2007, archived from the original on 2007-10-12.
  4. "Dennard, Robert H", People, Computer History Museum, retrieved Feb 9, 2012.
  5. National Medal of Technology recipients, 1988, archived from the original on 2006-08-12.

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