Agilent Technologies’ Waveform Generator/Fast Measurement Unit Used in NBTI Industry Defining Solution Research at IIT Bombay

Agilent Technologies Inc. announced that the Agilent B1530 Waveform Generator/Fast Measurement Unit (WGFMU) was used by the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay to make ultrafast measurements of  negative bias temperature instability (NBTI) degradation in deeply scaled high-K metal gate (HKMG) CMOS devices for a wide variety of DC and AC stress tests.

ITT Bombay presented the findings of its research in a paper delivered this week at the IEEE International Reliability Physics Symposium in Hawaii. The Agilent-supported lab at IIT Bombay included usage of ab-initio modeling.

NBTI is a serious reliability concern and affects the performance of CMOS IC chips used in electronic products such as laptops, tablets and cell phones. The phenomenon degrades the performance of transistors, the basic logic elements inside semiconductor ICs.

To determine the effect of NBTI during operation of a CMOS IC over a product’s lifetime (typically a few years), NBTI degradation is measured under accelerated voltage-induced-stress conditions. The measured results are then extrapolated to the end of the product’s life under use conditions using suitable models. The IC industry has now recognized the necessity of performing ultrafast measurements for accurate estimation of CMOS device degradation due to NBTI.

The unique data collected helped the researchers at IIT Bombay develop a robust model for predicting NBTI induced CMOS device degradation 1) during and after DC stress at different operating bias and temperature, and 2) during AC stress at different operating bias, temperature, pulse duty cycle and frequency. Calibrated model parameters are obtained, which are used for reliable estimation of NBTI degradation at end of IC life under different operating conditions.

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