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Placement for Immunity of Transient Faults in Cell-Based Design of Nanometer Circuits

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2 Author(s)
Bhattacharya, K. ; Dept. of Comput. Sci. & Eng., Univ. of South Florida, Tampa, FL, USA ; Ranganathan, N.

The rate of soft errors have been significantly increasing due to the aggressive scaling trends in the nanometer regime. Several circuit optimization techniques have been proposed in literature for preventing such transient faults, however, to the best of our knowledge, the reduction of soft error rate at the layout level has not been attempted in logic circuits. In this work, we show that transient glitches due to cosmic strikes can be sufficiently reduced by intelligently modifying the placement stage in cell based designs to selectively assign larger wirelengths to certain critical nets. Towards this, we propose a computationally efficient placement algorithm based on quadratic programming that significantly reduces the soft error rates of logic circuits. The algorithm tries to assign higher wirelengths for nets with low glitch masking probabilities for higher reduction in soft error rates (SER), while maintaining low delay and area penalty for the overall circuit. Experimental results on the ISCAS'85 benchmark circuits indicate that such a placement algorithm can significantly improve the soft error immunity in logic circuits without much delay and area overheads.

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