Experimental and Analytical Study of the Responses of Nanoscale Devices to Neutrons Impinging at Various Incident Angles

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IEEE-Inst Electrical Electronics Engineers Inc
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In harsh radiation environments, it is well known that the angle of incidence of impinging particles against the surface of the operating devices has significant effects on their sensitivity. This article discusses the sensitivity underestimations that are made if particle isotropy is not taken into account, by means of an analytical study made with a single-event upset predictive platform. To achieve this goal, experimental results carried out with a commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) bulk 130-nm nonvolatile static random access memory (SRAM) for various incident angles on 14.2 MeV neutrons are first discussed. Then, a modeling tool called multiscales single-event phenomena predictive platform (MUSCA-SEP3) is used to predict the sensitivity of this memory under the same environmental conditions. Predictions and experimental results will be cross-checked, and therefore, the feasibility of this tool will be demonstrated for testing any other incident angle. Finally, an isotropic environment and an XY SRAM array will be emulated with MUSCA in order to demonstrate that the asymmetrical cross sections that were observed experimentally for various incidence angles are due to the underlying asymmetry of the metalization/passivation layers within the device with respect to its active silicon. Conclusions will finally be drawn as for the importance of taking into account particle isotropy in radiation-ground tests.
This work was supported in part by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (MINECO) under project TIN2017-87237, and by the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM) Mobility Program for Young Professors. The authors are very grateful to our colleagues S. Rey, T. Gemond, and M. Baylac, from the Laboratoire de Physique Subatomique et Cosmologie (LPSC), Université Grenoble-Alpes & CNRS/IN2P3. The work on GENEPI2 at LPSC (CNRS/UGA) has been performed within the “Characterisation Program” of the IRT nanoelec.
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