PLYMOUTH, Minn., 13 Dec. 2011. Honeywell Microelectronics and Precision Sensors in Plymouth, Minn., and Tezzaron Semiconductor in Naperville, Ill., are working together to design power-efficient three-dimensional radiation-hardened integrated circuits for aerospace and defense applications such as satellites, manned spacecraft, and high-altitude aircraft.
Honeywell experts will use the company's S150 process together with Tezzaron's 3D stacking IC technology to increase circuit density in rad-hard 3D integrated circuits that company officials say will use less power than conventional two-dimensional chips.
3D technology has already proven its value in electronic memory, sensors, and microprocessors, company officials say. Using several layers of circuitry also increases redundancy for repair, and eventually could include micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) technology with radiation-hardened logic.
"The third dimension opens up broader design horizons for rad hard CMOS," says Robert Patti, chief technology officer at Tezzaron Semiconductor. "Memory can be integrated vertically rather than embedded in the logic die. The current practical limit is around 32 megabits, but 3D could put as much as four gigabits of high-quality DRAM onto a single rad-hard chip."
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