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Chinese academic fired for 'faking' chip designs

Chips didn't work as claimed, if at all, probe alleges

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A senior Chinese university official has been sacked from his position as head of the institution's microelectronics school for allegedly faking an entire series of chips in order to get state funding, local newswires reported late last week.

According to the Xinhau news service, Shanghai Jiaotong University said it had dismissed Chen Jin, until that moment the college's chair of the school of microelectronics. It also stripped him of his professorship. The move followed a government-initiated investigation into the development of four generations of the Hanxin DSP chip family.

The probe was launched in January by China's Ministry of Science and Technology, its Ministry of Education, and local government of Shanghai in response to a letter received the previous month claiming Chen had engaged in fraudulent research.

The investigation's central conclusion: that the Hanxin designs, claimed to be high-end, leading-edge parts, did not work as promised or, for that matter, work very well at all. A design said to sport two cores, for example, contained only one, investigators alleged.

In addition to losing his job and professorship, Chen was ordered to pay back the government funds invested in the Hanxin operation. ®

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