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Title: The effects of process variations on performance and robustness of bulk CMOS and SOI implementations of C-elements
Authors: Al Tarawneh, Ziyad
Issue Date: 2011
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: Advances in semiconductor technology have been driven by the continuous demands of market forces for IC products with higher performance and greater functionality per unit area. To date industry has addressed these demands, principally, by scaling down device dimensions. However, several unintended consequences have undermined the benefits obtained from the advances in technology, firstly, the growing impact of process variations on interconnectivity delay, aggravated by the increase in the amount of interconnectivity as circuit complexity increases. Overall, the difficulty of establishing delay parameters in a circuit is adversely impacting on the attainment of the timing closure for a design. Secondly, the increase in the susceptibility of the circuits , even at ground level, to the effects of soft errors due to the reduction in supply voltages and nodal capacitances, together with the increase in the number of nodes in a circuit as the functionality per unit area increases. The aim of this research has been to model and analyse the reliability of logic circuits with regard to the impact of process variations and soft errors, and to finds ways to minimise these effects using different process technologies such as fully depleted silicon on insulator (FDSOI) and partially depleted silicon on insulator (PDSOI) technologies, together with the implementation of different circuit architectures. In view of the increased susceptibility of logic elements to the effects of process variations and soft errors as device geometries are reduced, a logic element which is not only widely used but also typical to asynchronous design is the Muller C-element, which can be realised in a number of different circuit configurations. The robustness of various C-element configurations implemented in different technologies with regard to the effects of process variations and soft errors was examined using the design of the experiment (DoE) and response surface (RSM) techniques. It was found that the circuits based on SOI technology were more robust compared with bulk silicon technology. On the other hand, from the circuit architecture perspective, the differential logic implementations of C-element were found to be more resilient to the effects of process variation and soft errors in comparison with the other C-element implementations investigated.
Description: PhD Thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Electrical, Electronic and Computer Engineering

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