We have studied single event effects in static and dynamic registers designed in a quarter micron CMOS process. In our design, we systematically used guardrings and enclosed (edgeless) transistor geometry to improve the total dose tolerance. This design technique improved both the SEL and SEU sensitivity of the circuits. Using SPICE simulations, the measured smooth transition of the cross-section curve between LET threshold and saturation has been traced to the presence of four different upset modes, each corresponding to a different critical charge and sensitive area. A new architecture to protect the content of storage cells has been developed, and a threshold LET around 89 MeV cm/sup 2/ mg/sup -1/ has been measured for this cell at a power supply voltage of 2 V.