Clamping Diode-based Radiation Tolerant Circuit Design Approach
This chapter presents a radiation tolerant combinational circuit design approach, which is based on the clamping action of a diode. This diode clamping-based hardening approach is based on the use of shadow gates, whose task is to protect the primary gate in case it experiences a radiation strike. The gate to be protected is duplicated locally, and a pair of diode connected transistors (or diodes) is connected between the outputs of the original and the shadow gate. These diodes turn on when the voltage across the two gate outputs deviates (during a radiation strike). A methodology is also presented to protect specific gates of the circuit based on electrical masking, in a manner that guarantees radiation tolerance for the entire circuit while keeping the area and delay overhead low. An improved circuit level hardening algorithm is also proposed, to further reduce the delay and area overhead. Note that the diode clamping-based approach is suitable for hardening a circuit against low energy particle strikes.
KeywordsCritical Depth Soft Error Area Overhead Combinational Circuit Circuit Level
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