Obituaries

In memory of those that left an invaluable mark in our community


Marco Di Natale
1966 – 2022

Prof. Marco Di Natale, full Professor at the Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna of Pisa, Italy, passed away all too soon after suffering a health crisis while attending a conference abroad, at the age of 56. Marco earned his PhD from Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna in 1991, was Director of the Real-Time Systems (ReTiS) Lab from 2003 to 2006, and was a visiting Researcher at the University of California, Berkeley in 2006 and 2008. Over several decades, Marco was a highly respected, energetic, and prolific researcher in multiple areas of real-time and embedded systems including scheduling and timing analysis, memory management, model-based design, computer architecture, design automation and optimization, operating systems, and automotive applications. His work is widely cited and received numerous awards over the years. He also served on numerous technical program committees for conferences in our research community, as Program Chair and General Chair for the RTAS conference, as an Associate Editor for the IEEE Transactions on CAD, and on the editorial board of the IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics, ACM Transactions on Embedded Systems, and Real-Time Systems (Springer). He was a member of the Technical Committee on Factory Automation, where he served as the Chair of the Subcommittee on Embedded Systems for multiple terms. He also collaborated extensively with other researchers in academia, as well as industry, including Magneti Marelli, ST Microelectronics, General Motors, United Technologies Research Center, Huawei, and the EU ADAMS project automotive expert group, among others. Marco was an invaluable and pragmatic mentor, always ready to challenge students and colleagues with a wave of intriguing questions, for an in-depth digging into any technical problem discussed with him. He will be especially missed for his joyful and empathic personality.


Laurent George
1967-2021

Laurent’s engagement in the real-time systems research community started in the 90s, having co-authored several influential works on uniprocessor scheduling. Since then, Laurent developed a prolific career with numerous contributions covering multiple facets of real-time scheduling in the context of uniprocessors, multiprocessors and networks. He was general chair of RTNS 2009 and ECRTS 2013 and guest editor in specialized journals. Beyond his characteristics as an eminent researcher, Laurent left an indelible mark in all those that met him, with his kindness, joy of life and discretion. Sadly, after an unfair fight against a sudden illness, Laurent prematurely left us on the 6th of July of 2021.


Chung Laung (Dave) Liu
1934-2020

Dr. C.L. Liu lived a fantastic life. He was a world-renowned pioneer in more than one research field, namely real-time task scheduling theories and electronic design automation, and a true educator and administrator. He was the first author of the trailblazing paper from 1973 on real-time scheduling, with over 12000 citations. He received countless awards and earned high respect from fellow scientists in the research communities on account of his scholarship and mentorship of many people in both academia and industry. In particular, he was the first recipient of the TCRTS Outstanding Technical Achievements and Leadership Award in 1999. He was a passionate lover of poetry and was well known for enjoying good food with his family and friends. He was a lifelong learner and never retired. He broadcast a regular program over a radio station in Taiwan for more than four years and published audiobooks. We will always remember his generosity in bringing a positive influence over people. His accomplishments made him a legend in his time.

A memorial webpage can be found here.


Sang Lyul Min
1961-2020

Prof. Sang Lyul Min was a dedicated leader with great contributions to the real-time community.  His frontier work on architecture-aware timing analysis led a new research field that bridges the real-time community and the computer architecture community. He also had a major impact on the flash memory industry.  His contributions include a breakthrough design of SSD in the mid-2000’s, leading to the world’s fastest commercial SSD products at the time. He served on many program committees, including of RTSS, RTAS, ECRTS.  He also has chaired or organized many conferences and workshops. For example, he co-organized the first RTCSA in 1994 at Seoul National University and  ESWEEK 2006 in Seoul.  He was program co-chair of EMSOFT 2016 and LCTES 2000, general co-chair of ISCA 2016, and many other domestic and international events.  Prof. Sang Lyul Min from Seoul National University passed away on February 24th, 2020 after bravely fighting pancreatic cancer for about a year.  We are deeply saddened by the untimely loss of Prof. Sang Lyul Min and will remember his life and legacy.


Stefan Petters
1969-2019

Stefan was a prominent member of our community with strong interest for practical aspects of real-time computing. His work extended from worst-case execution time to schedulability analysis, mixed-criticality systems, adaptive real-time systems and system energy management. He organized the first student competition at RTSS 2005, the Martian Task, and was a strong supporter of [email protected], having chaired the first edition in RTSS 2011. Beyond these examples, he participated in the organization of numerous related events, being recognized for his enthusiasm and positive character. Notably, he was General Co-Chair of RTCSA 2006 in Sydney and ECRTS 2011 in Porto. His professional path crossed academia and industry, from the University of York, to NICTA in Sydney, CISTER in Porto, Elektrobit in Munich and Exida in Stuttgart. Stefan sadly passed way in November of 2019, at the age of 50.