Hybrid MOS and Single-Electron Transistor Architectures towards Arithmetic Applications

Guoqing Deng, University of Windsor


Metal-Oxide-Semiconductor Field-Effect Transistor (MOSFET) and Single-Electron Transistor (SET) hybrid architectures, which combine the merits of both MOSFET and SET, promise to be a practical implementation for nanometer-scale circuit design. In this thesis, we design arithmetic circuits, including adders and multipliers, using SET/MOS hybrid architectures with the goal of reducing circuit area and power dissipation and improving circuit reliability. Thanks to the Coulomb blockade oscillation characteristic of SET, the design of SET/MOS hybrid adders becomes very simple, and requires only a few transistors by using the proposed schemes of multiple-valued logic (MVL), phase modulation, and frequency modulation. The phase and frequency modulation schemes are also utilized for the design of multipliers. Two types of SET/MOS hybrid multipliers are presented in this thesis. One is the binary tree multiplier which adopts conventional tree structures with multi-input counters (or compressors) implemented with the phase modulation scheme. Compared to conventional CMOS tree multipliers, the area and power dissipation of the proposed multiplier are reduced by half. The other is the frequency modulated multiplier following a novel design methodology where the information is processed in the frequency domain. In this context, we explore the implicit frequency properties of SET, including both frequency gain and frequency mixing. The major merits of this type of multiplier include: a) simplicity of circuit structure, and b) high immunity against background charges within SET islands. Background charges are mainly induced by defects or impurities located within the oxide barriers, and cannot be entirely removed by today's technology. Since these random charges deteriorate the circuit reliability, we investigate different circuit solutions, such as feedback structure and frequency modulation, in order to counteract this problem. The feedback represents an error detection and correction mechanism which offsets the background charge effect by applying an appropriate voltage through an additional gate of SET. The frequency modulation, on the other hand, exploits the fact that background charges only shift the phase of Coulomb blockade oscillation without changing its amplitude and periodicity. Therefore, SET/MOS hybrid adders and multipliers using the frequency modulation scheme exhibit the high immunity against these undesired charges.