Abstract

Single bit failures are the dominant failure mode for SRAM 6T bit cell memory devices. The analysis of failing single bits is aided by the fact that the mechanism is localized to the failing 6T bit cell. After electrically analyzing numerous failing bits, it was observed that failing bit cells were consistently producing specific electrical signatures (current-voltage curves). To help identify subtle bit cell failure mechanisms, this paper discusses an MCSpice program which was needed to simulate a 6T SRAM bit cell and the electrical analysis. It presents four case studies that show how MCSpice modeling of defective 6T SRAM bit cells was successfully used to identify subtle defect types (opens or shorts) and locations within the failing cell. The use of an MCSpice simulation and the appropriate physical analysis of defective bit cells resulted in a >90% success rate for finding failure mechanisms on yield and process certification programs.

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