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Charge Collection Studies on Integrated Circuit Test Structures using Heavy-Ion Microbeams and MEDICI Simulation Calculations

Description: Ion induced charge collection dynamics within Integrated Circuits (ICs) is important due to the presence of ionizing radiation in the IC environment. As the charge signals defining data states are reduced by voltage and area scaling, the semiconductor device will naturally have a higher susceptibility to ionizing radiation induced effects. The ionizing radiation can lead to the undesired generation and migration of charge within an IC. This can alter, for example, the memory state of a bit, and thereby produce what is called a "soft" error, or Single Event Upset (SEU). Therefore, the response of ICs to natural radiation is of great concern for the reliability of future devices. Immunity to soft errors is listed as a requirement in the 1997 National Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors prepared by the Semiconductor Industry Association in the United States. To design more robust devices, it is essential to create and test accurate models of induced charge collection and transport in semiconductor devices. A heavy ion microbeam produced by an accelerator is an ideal tool to study charge collection processes in ICs and to locate the weak nodes and structures for improvement through hardening design. In this dissertation, the Ion Beam Induced Charge Collection (IBICC) technique is utilized to simulate recoil effects of ions in ICs. These silicon or light ion recoils are usually produced by the elastic scattering or inelastic reactions between cosmic neutrons or protons and the lattice atoms in ICs. Specially designed test structures were experimentally studied, using microbeams produced at Sandia National Laboratories. A new technique, Diffusion Time Resolved IBICC, is first proposed in this work to measure the average arrival time of the diffused charge, which can be related to the first moment (or the average time) of the arrival carrier density at the junction. A 2D device simulation ...
Date: May 2000
Creator: Guo, Baonian
Partner: UNT Libraries