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The holding voltage of the high-voltage devices in snapback breakdown condition has been found to be much smaller than the power supply voltage. Such characteristics will cause the LCD driver ICs to be susceptible to the latchup-like danger in the practical system applications, especially while these devices are used in the power-rail ESD clamp circuit. A new latchup-free design on the power-rail ESD clamp circuit with stacked-field-oxide structure is proposed and successfully verified in a 0.25-μm 40-V CMOS process to achieve the desired ESD level. The total holding voltage of the stacked-field-oxide structure in snapback breakdown condition can be larger than the power supply voltage. Therefore, latchup or latchup-like issues can be avoided by stacked-field-oxide structures for the IC applications with power supply of 40 V.
Date of Publication: Aug. 2005