Improved Fault Tolerant SRAM Cell Design & Layout in 130nm Technology
Technology scaling of CMOS devices has made the integrated circuits vulnerable to single event radiation effects. Scaling of CMOS Static RAM (SRAM) has led to denser packing architectures by reducing the size and spacing of diffusion nodes. However, this trend has led to the increase in charge collection and sharing effects between devices during an ion strike, making the circuit even more vulnerable to a specific single event effect called the single event multiple-node upset (SEMU). In nanometer technologies, SEMU can easily disrupt the data stored in the memory and can be more hazardous than a single event single-node upset. During the last decade, most of the research efforts were mainly focused on improving the single event single-node upset tolerance of SRAM cells by using novel circuit techniques, but recent studies relating to angular radiation sensitivity has revealed the importance of SEMU and Multi Bit Upset (MBU) tolerance for SRAM cells. The research focuses on improving SEMU tolerance of CMOS SRAM cells by using novel circuit and layout level techniques. A novel SRAM cell circuit & layout technique is proposed to improve the SEMU tolerance of 6T SRAM cells with decreasing feature size, making it an ideal candidate for future technologies. The layout is based on strategically positioning diffusion nodes in such a way as to provide charge cancellation among nodes during SEMU radiation strikes, instead of charge build-up. The new design & layout technique can improve the SEMU tolerance levels by up to 20 times without sacrificing on area overhead and hence is suitable for high density SRAM designs in commercial applications. Finally, laser testing of SRAM based configuration memory of a Xilinx Virtex-5 FPGA is performed to analyze the behavior of SRAM based systems towards radiation strikes.
Keyword 1, SEMU, Keyword 2, 6T SRAM, Keyword 3, SEU
Master of Science (M.Sc.)
Electrical and Computer Engineering