Radiation-induced soft error analysis of STT-MRAM: A device to circuit approach

TitleRadiation-induced soft error analysis of STT-MRAM: A device to circuit approach
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsJ Yang, P Wang, Y Zhang, Y Cheng, W Zhao, Y Chen, and HH Li
JournalIeee Transactions on Computer Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems
Volume35
Start Page380
Issue3
Pagination380 - 393
Date Published03/2016
Abstract

Spin-transfer torque magnetic random access memory (STT-MRAM) is a promising emerging memory technology due to its various advantageous features such as scalability, nonvolatility, density, endurance, and fast speed. However, the reliability of STT-MRAM is severely impacted by environmental disturbances because radiation strike on the access transistor could introduce potential write and read failures for 1T1MTJ cells. In this paper, a comprehensive approach is proposed to evaluate the radiation-induced soft errors spanning from device modeling to circuit level analysis. The simulation based on 3-D metal-oxide-semiconductor transistor modeling is first performed to capture the radiation-induced transient current pulse. Then a compact switching model of magnetic tunneling junction (MTJ) is developed to analyze the various mechanisms of STT-MRAM write failures. The probability of failure of 1T1MTJ is characterized and built as look-up-tables. This approach enables designers to consider the effect of different factors such as radiation strength, write current magnitude and duration time on soft error rate of STT-MRAM memory arrays. Meanwhile, comprehensive write and sense circuits are evaluated for bit error rate analysis under random radiation effects and transistors process variation, which is critical for performance optimization of practical STT-MRAM read and sense circuits.

DOI10.1109/TCAD.2015.2474366
Short TitleIeee Transactions on Computer Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems