Friday, June 17, 2011

Imec finds that FinFETs outperform planar CMOS for SRAM yield

The Imec research institute, headquartered in Leuven - Belgium, has announced results of a comparison of SRAM product yield that found FinFET structures outperform conventional planar CMOS.

In order to assess the impact of process variability, Imec says that they compared one planar and two FinFET technologies on key figures of merit, testing both single memory SRAM cells and full SRAM arrays. Both FinFET technologies that were tested were superior to planar technology for medium- to large-sized (>128-512Kbytes) SRAM arrays. The FinFET SRAMs were also found to be far less sensitive to device mismatches, suggesting that designers may be able to use more aggressive scaling of the power supply with FinFETs. For undoped SOIFFs (silicon-on-insulator FinFET), Imec's results showed that the power supply can be lowered by an additional 200mV compared to planar devices.
In their report, Imec noted that SRAMs, which are constructed from a large number of small, highly variable devices, are especially sensitive to device mismatch that can result in poor yield. Imec found that FinFET devices exhibited lower leakage as well as lower variability than planar transistor. Intel recently announced the first mass production of FinFET devices in their 22nm 3D Tri-Gate process.

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