Nihar Athreyas – An Entrepreneur with a Vision to Revolutionize Computing Architectures for Artificial Intelligence

spero devices

Website – Spero Devices

When Dr Nihar Athreyas started his PhD at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, he had no idea that his doctoral dissertation would be the basis for a commercial product. Now, he is the founding member and Chief Technology Officer of a company that is designing processors. Founded in 2015, Spero Devices is a startup located in a small town to the west of Boston, MA that is designing hardware accelerators for Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) Algorithms running on edge platforms.

In the recent years Artificial Intelligence has taken the tech industry by storm. They are being used everywhere from home automation and digital assistants to mobile robotics and self-driving cars. However, these algorithms require a large amount of computing resources which cannot be handled by general purpose processors such as the central processing units (CPUs). This has opened up an opportunity in the semiconductor industry and everybody from the technology giants such as Apple and Nvidia to slew of startup companies have taken on the challenge of rethinking fundamental computer architectures and are developing new processors that can handle these heavy workloads.

Spero Devices is one such company. Under the technical leadership of Dr. Athreyas, Spero has been awarded multiple fundamental research contracts from the U.S. Department of Defense. Under these contracts Dr. Athreyas and his team were selected to develop novel computing architectures for accelerating algorithms for ML and AI applications.

Dr. Athreyas hails from the city of Mysore in Karnataka.He obtained a bachelor’s degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering from M.S. Ramaiah Institute of Technology in Bangalore, India which is affiliated with Visvesvaraya Technological University of Karnataka. He also obtaineda Master of Science degree and Doctorate both in the field of Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 2013 and 2018, respectively. Spero Devices, Inc. was formed while Dr. Athreyas was pursuing his doctoral degree.

Dr. Athreyas is a very well-known researcher in this field and he has published scholarly research papers in international conferences and journals. He has been awarded multiple patents that have been assigned to Spero Devices, Inc. for commercialization. He is also on the editorial boards of various scientific journals and is also a member of the board of directors for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Enterprise Forum (MITEF).

An expert in various technical areas including processor design and development, Dr. Athreyas is now responsible for research, design and development of product architecture, corporate development and market strategy at Spero Devices. He is the lead scientist and engineer for all the Department of Defense projects that are ongoing. Dr. Athreyas is considered to be one of the top people in this field and he hopes to take the company to new levels.