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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Defect tolerance for yield enhancement of FPGA interconnect using fine-grain and coarse-grain redundancy Yu, Anthony J.

Abstract

Field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) are integrated circuits (ICs) designed to implement, or be programmed with, any user circuit. This unique ability makes FPGA extremely popular; however, it also introduces a significant amount of area and delay overhead to the circuit. Fortunately, FPGA are typically manufactured in a process that is two to three generations ahead of the one used by application specific ICs. This allows some reclaiming of area and delay lost due to the programmability. However, the problem with being this far ahead is manufacturing defects appearing in immature technologies. The aggressive scaling of feature sizes and the migration to new technologies makes the manufacturing of perfect FPGAs increasingly unlikely. Utilization of defect-tolerant techniques is one method of alleviating this growing problem. Defect-tolerance enable defective FPGAs to appear as "perfect." This thesis presents and compares two new approaches to FPGAs defecttolerance: fine-grain redundancy (FGR) and coarse-grain redundancy (CGR). FGR has an array-size-independent overhead of up 50%, and is capable of tolerating an increasing number of defects as array size grows. In constast, CGR, at low defect levels, demonstrates a diminishing amount of area overhead as array size increases. At l ow defect levels, CGR requires less area overhead than FGR ; however, in situations where more than 2-3 defects are expected, FGR requires less overhead.

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