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This paper presents and discusses the results of Alpha Single Event Upset (SEU) tests on an embedded 8051 microprocessor core implemented using three different standard cell libraries. Each library is based on a different Design for Manufacturability (DfM) optimization strategy; our goal is to understand how these strategies may affect the device sensitivity to alpha-induced Soft Errors. The three implementations are tested resorting to advanced Design for Testability (DfT) methodologies and radiation experiments results are compared. Electrical simulations of flip-flops are finally performed to propose physical motivations to the observed phenomena.
Date of Publication: Aug. 2010