Mittal receives Facebook Research Award

2/25/2020 Ryann Monahan, ECE ILLINOIS

Written by Ryann Monahan, ECE ILLINOIS

CSL Assistant Professor Radhika Mittal recently received a networking systems research award from Facebook for her proposal “Semantic Management of Packet Drops.”

Radhika Mittal
Radhika Mittal

Mittal’s research is set to improve the responsiveness of Facebook’s real-time applications, which would improve the overall user experience of such applications. For example, the technology would make it possible to create scenes on a virtual reality (VR) device faster or allow a robot to react to its environment more smoothly.

“The ideas in the proposal have the potential of cutting down the network communication time in real-time applications that run computations on remote servers hosted in the cloud or the edge, e.g. virtual reality (VR) applications and cloud robotics,” Mittal explained.

Facebook launched the Networking Systems request for proposals (RFP) to deepen its collaboration with academia and foster further innovation last year.  “Facebook is committed to advancing computer networking research, and we are excited to see the outcomes of these research proposals,” Facebook Research said in the award announcement.

Facebook Research focused its interest on proposals that fell into two categories; improving network efficiency with intelligent control, such as traffic engineering, routing, cache management, and congestion control and programmable switches and their applications, such as troubleshooting, hardware acceleration, and new routing protocols.

One aspect of Mittal’s proposal is a new use case for programmable switches. “It is a switch buffer management scheme that is more informed of application requirements, and can help improve the performance of applications requiring time-sensitive data delivery,” Mittal said.

Mittal’s is one of six proposals selected among the 71 received from 17 countries. She will receive an unrestricted gift of $50,000 from Facebook Research. Mittal is also affiliated with the electrical and computer engineering department.


Read the full award announcement from Facebook here.

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This story was published February 25, 2020.