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The impact of software and CAE tools on SEU in field programmable gate arrays

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4 Author(s)
Katz, R. ; NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, USA ; Wang, J. ; McCollum, J. ; Cronquist, B.

Field programmable gate array (FPGA) devices, heavily used in spacecraft electronics, have grown substantially in size over the past few years, causing designers to work at a higher conceptual level, with computer aided engineering (CAE) tools synthesizing and optimizing the logic from a description. It is shown that the use of commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) CAE tools can produce unreliable circuit designs when the device is used in a radiation environment and a flip-flop is upset. At a lower level, software can be used to improve the SEU performance of a flip-flop, exploiting the configurable nature of FPGA technology and on-chip delay, parasitic resistive, and capacitive circuit elements.

Published in:

Nuclear Science, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:46 ,  Issue: 6 )