Deep Submicron Radiation Hardened Logic for Communications

Award Information
Department of Defense
Air Force
Award Year:
Phase II
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Microelectronics Research Development Co
4775 Centennial Boulevard, Suite 130, Colorado Springs, CO, 80919
Hubzone Owned:
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
Woman Owned:
Principal Investigator:
Steve Philpy
Director of Programs
(719) 531-0805
Business Contact:
Karen Cura
Chief Financial Officer
(719) 531-0805
Research Institution:
The development of advanced microelectronics for satellite communications applications have become increasingly expensive. Smaller feature-sized microelectronics fabrication is now needed to provide ICs for complex radiation-hardened communications systems operating in space. Historically, radiation-hardened integrated circuit (IC) components have been fabricated at dedicated foundries using specialty, hardened, larger-feature size, expensive processes while commercial foundries focus on producing high-performance, non-radiation tolerant, ICs using smaller and smaller feature size processes. Micro-RDC, a leading developer of technology for IC device hardening by design, instead of by process, has developed a family of 90nm Design-Hardened Structured Application Specific Integrated Circuits (DH SASICs) that can be produced on a commercial IC fabrication line using a Single Reticle, Multi-Project-Wafer. This enables satellite systems designers to develop high-performance radiation-hardened ICs, at a very low cost. This technology has gained much popularity lately amongst space communications IC designers, but the need for even higher speed devices now exists. This Phase II effort proposes to design, fabricate and test a proof-of-concept test chip to verify some of the key elements of a next generation 45nm SOI DH SASIC. This verification should demonstrate sufficient reduced program risk to entice an outside investor/developer to fund a Phase III development program. BENEFIT: Space Communications program designers are developing high-performance systems to provide advanced processing from space-based platforms. These systems require advanced, high-speed, radiation-hardened integrated circuits for data processing. High-Speed integrated circuits for specific processing functions that are radiation-hardened for space, currently either do not exist or are manufactured at great expense. These devices also tend to be large and require much power for operation. Commercial ICs are not tolerant to radiation effects and were not designed to meet military specifications. Micro-RDC’s previous 90nm Bulk CMOS Design-Hardened Structured ASIC program enables designers to develop advanced radiation-hardened digital ICs at a fraction of the cost and with much lower power demands. With even faster and more dense satellite system requirements now being developed Micro-RDC’s Design-Hardened Structured ASIC program needs to migrate to the next generation 45nm feature-size technology to meet the needs of even faster computing, with the benefit of SOI substrates for enhanced hardness.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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