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Low-Temperature Fabrication of Spiking Soma Circuits Using Nanocrystalline-Silicon TFTs

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5 Author(s)
Subramaniam, A. ; Dept. of Electr. Eng., Univ. of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, TX, USA ; Cantley, K.D. ; Stiegler, H.J. ; Chapman, R.A.
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Spiking neuron circuits consisting of ambipolar nanocrystalline-silicon (nc-Si) thin-film transistors (TFTs) have been fabricated using low temperature processing conditions (maximum of 250 °C) that allow the use of flexible substrates. These circuits display behaviors commonly observed in biological neurons such as millisecond spike duration, nonlinear frequency-current relationship, and spike frequency adaptation. The maximum drive capacity of a simple soma circuit was estimated to be approximately 9200 synapses. The effect of bias stress-induced threshold voltage degradation of component nc-Si TFTs on the spike frequency of soma circuits is explored. The measured power consumption of the circuit when spiking at 100 Hz was approximately 12 nW. Finally, the power consumption of the soma circuits at different spiking conditions and its implications on a large-scale system are discussed. The fabricated circuits can be employed as part of a compact multilayer learning network.

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Neural Networks and Learning Systems, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:24 ,  Issue: 9 )