Environmental monitors are the fundamental building blocks of a silicon lifecycle solution. To bring designs on advanced process technologies to life, SOC architects need monitors that can provide a greater understanding of device fabrication, process variability and dynamically changing conditions in the field. The increasing variability of silicon in small geometries, combined with the non-deterministic nature of devices during operation, makes the sensing of process, voltage and temperature (PVT) environmental conditions within the chip an imperative.
PVT monitors monitors can be used for model-to-hardware correlation of circuit design and timing tools. PVT sensors can track dynamic fluctuations in local power supply voltage and can directly measure silicon temperature to detect the hot spots on the chip and can act on it accordingly to improve system reliability and performance.
In-chip monitors and PVT sensors can be embedded as subsystems that can guide the decisions made by automatic test equipment during production, power management schemes during mission mode, and analytics throughout product lifecycles. Embedding PVT monitors can deliver significant performance and reliability benefits for planar, Multi-die and 3D IC FinFET/GAA silicon technologies.