Low-power Hybrid TFET-CMOS Memory

Anoop Gopinath, Purdue University


The power consumption and the switching speed of the current CMOS technology have reached their limits. In contrast, architecture design within computer systems are continuously seeking more performance and efficiency. Advanced technologies that optimize the power consumption and switching speed may help deliver this eciency. Indeed, beyond CMOS technology may be a viable approach to meeting the ever increasing need for low-power design. These technology includes devices such as Tunnel Field Effect Transistor (TFET), Graphene based devices such as GFET and GRNFET and FinFET. However, the low cross-sectional area of the channel associated with smaller technology nodes brings with it the challenges associated with leakage current below the threshold. Mitigating these challenges with devices such as TFETs may allow higher levels of integration, faster switching speed and lower power consumption. This thesis investigates the use of Gallium Nitride (GaN) TFET devices at 20nm for memory cells. These cells can be used in the L1 data cache of the Graphic Processing Units (GPU) thereby minimizing the static power and the dynamic power within these memory systems. The TFET technology was chosen since it has a low subthreshold slope of nearly 30mV/decade. This enables the TFET-based cells to function with a 0.6V supply voltage leading to reduced dynamic power consumption and leakage current when compared to the current CMOS technology. The results suggest that there are benefits in pursuing an integrated TFET-based technology for Very Large Scale Integrated Circuit (VLSI) design. These benefits are demonstrated using simulation at the schematic-level using Cadence Virtuoso.




Rizkalla, Purdue University.

Subject Area

Electrical engineering

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