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An Array-Based Test Circuit for Fully Automated Gate Dielectric Breakdown Characterization

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4 Author(s)
Keane, J. ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Univ. of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, USA ; Venkatraman, S. ; Butzen, P. ; Kim, C.H.

We propose an array-based test circuit for efficiently characterizing gate dielectric breakdown. Such a design is highly beneficial when studying this statistical process, where up to thousands of samples are needed to create an accurate time to breakdown Weibull distribution. The proposed circuit also facilitates investigations of any spatial correlation of dielectric failures, and can monitor a progressive decrease in gate resistance. Measurement results are presented from a 32 × 32 test array implemented in a 130-nm bulk CMOS process. Results show that this system is capable of taking accurate measurements across a range of voltages and temperatures, which is critical for extrapolating accelerated stress experiment results to expected device lifetimes under realistic operating conditions.

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Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI) Systems, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:19 ,  Issue: 5 )