SITIS Archives - Topic Details
Program:  SBIR
Topic Num:  DTRA102-008 (DTRA)
Title:  The Characterization and Mitigation of Radiation Effects on Nano-technology Microelectronics
Research & Technical Areas:  Materials/Processes, Sensors, Electronics, Space Platforms, Nuclear Te...

Acquisition Program:  
 The technology within this topic is restricted under the International Traffic in Arms Regulation (ITAR), which controls the export and import of defense-related material and services. Offerors must disclose any proposed use of foreign nationals, their country of origin, and what tasks each would accomplish in the statement of work in accordance with section 3.5.b.(7) of the solicitation.
  Objective:  The successful outcome of this effort will support the use of ultra-deep submicron integrated circuits in DoD satellite systems that will result in very significant savings in weight, power and reliability for systems that include Space Radar, Space Tracking and Surveillance Systems and others. In addition, this effort will also support the use of compound semiconductor technologies (e.g. antimony based compound semiconductors, indium phosphide, and others) in these systems and their introduction into advanced spacecraft and missile systems with similar savings in both power and weight, coupled with increased performance.
  Description:  Current satellite systems are fabricated using a mix of commercial and radiation hardened circuits. However, the use of advanced commercial integrated circuits devices results in added complexity to mitigate radiation effects that can result in the mis-operation and/or destruction of devices. In many cases, the penalties in increased power, area, weight and added circuit complexity out-weigh any potential benefits and preclude the use of the advanced commercial technology. Moreover, these technologies have demonstrated sensitivity to radiation effects. The present methods to mitigate radiation effects, while proven to be effective at circuit geometries > 150nm silicon based technology, have been shown to be less effective when applied to integrated circuit feature sizes below 100nm silicon based and compound semiconductor technologies. In addition, the introduction of new technologies, e.g. quantum function circuits, will require the development of new mitigation approaches. Thus, if minimally invasive methods such as the use of alternative materials, circuit enhancements, and other innovative approaches could be developed to reduce radiation effects sensitivity these devices could be used with little or no penalties. Therefore, the basic approach to accomplish this task would be to leverage commercial microelectronics at the < 90nm nodes and augment these technologies with radiation mitigation techniques that would have minimal impact on the electrical performance and manufacturability. This same approach also applies to the radiation hardening of the compound semiconductor and other technologies. Additionally, the development of such methods requires the development of cost effective methods to model and simulate the radiation response of these < 90nm, compound semiconductor and other technologies. Without a robust modeling and simulation capability it would be both technically and economically unfeasible to develop these mitigation methods.

  PHASE I: • Identification of minimally invasive methods, including material approaches, to mitigate radiation effects in < 90nm microelectronics technologies, III-V, SiGe and other materials systems. • Development of cost effective radiation effects modeling and simulation methods for < 90nm microelectronics, compound semiconductor and other technologies for digital and analog/mixed-signal microelectronics applications. • Identification of design science approaches to mitigate radiation effects.
  PHASE II: • Electronic Design Automation tools (programs) that can: o Identify design sensitivities in complex integrated circuits o Design radiation insensitive integrated circuits o Perform trade studies to provide optimized integrated circuits with respect to radiation and electrical performance o Analyses the radiation response of complex integrated circuits • Technology Computer Aided Design (TCAD) tools that can: o Provide cost effective 3-D models to support the simulation of the radiation response of nanotechnology microelectronics. o Identify radiation sensitivities at the transistor level • Mixed-Mode and Level Simulation systems that can effectively couple the radiation response at the transistor level to higher levels of circuit and subsystem integration (e.g. transistor response to small circuit to complex circuit to sub-system) to support the accurate radiation response simulation up to and including the sub-system level. • Radiation effects Product Design Kits (PDK) that combine the electrical and radiation response design and modeling parameters for a specific technology. PDKs are provided by semiconductor manufacturers to their customers to support design activities. In general a semiconductor manufacturer will develop an electrical performance and design PDK that must be then augmented with radiation performance to support customers that require the technology to be used in a radiation environment. • Development and demonstration of < 90nm radiation effects modeling and simulation methods for these technologies. • Development and demonstration of design science approaches for radiation effects mitigation.

  PHASE III DUAL USE APPLICATIONS: Use of the mitigation, modeling and simulation methods developed through this effort will support the use of advanced microelectronics for terrestrial applications such as very high performance microprocessor, advanced servers, and very large cache memories.

  References:   1. IEEE Transactions on Nuclear Science; December 2007, Volume 54, Number 6, Session H: Single Event Effects Mechanisms and Modeling, pages 2297 - 2425 2. IEEE Transactions on Nuclear Science; December 2005, Volume 52, Number 6, Session A Single Even Effects: Mechanisms and Modeling, pages 2104-2231 3. IEEE Transactions on Nuclear Science; December 2005, Volume 52, Number 6, Session F Single Even Effects: Devices and Integrated Circuits, pages 2421-2495 4. JEDEC 57, SEE Test and Characterization Guidelines and Test Method 5. Military Test Method 1019, Steady State Total Ionizing Dose 6. ASTM 1892 – Steady State Total Ionizing Effects Guideline

Keywords:  Single-Event Effects, Single-Event Upset, Single-Event Transients, Total Ionizing Dose, Displacement Damage, nano-technology

Questions and Answers:
Q: Must the requested modeling/simulation software account for particle radiation, electromagnetic radiation, or both?
A: The modeling/simulation software only needs to account for one type of radiation (particle or electromagnetic).
Q: To be able to narrow the scope of the innovations which dramatically improve radiation hardness, and which can combine high radiation hardness with outstanding speed, power and cost parameters, in integrated circuits; --
Q: We respectfully request crude approximations of target parameters as follows:
Total dose: e.g. >0.2M, >1M, >2M, >4M [rad] ?
Dose Rate: e.g. >1T [rad(Si)/sec] ?
SEU Rate: e.g. <1p [errors/bit/day] ?
Threshold LET: e.g. >150M [eV/mg/ cm sq.] ?
Effects of recent HAND events provided us estimates, but DTRA may have other requirements.
A: DTRA uses the following for radiation requirements:
Total Ionizing Dose - (rd(Si)) > 1 M rd(Si) > 500 krd(Si) 100krd increments
Single-Event-Upset - (errors/bit-day) < 1E-11 <1E-10
Single-Event-Latchup - (LET in Mev-cm2/mg) > 120 > 100
Neutron Irradiation - (Mev eq. n/cm2) > 1E13 >1E12
Dose-Rate Upset - (rd(SiO2)/s) > 1E10 >1E 9
Dose-Rate Survivability - (rd(SiO2)/s) (3) 1E12 1E12

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