Low-noise circuitry for extreme environment detection systems implemented in SiGe BiCMOS technology
Kenyon, Eleazar Walter
MetadataShow full item record
This work evaluates two SiGe BiCMOS technology platforms as candidates for implementing extreme environment capable circuitry, with an emphasis on applications requiring high sensitivity and low noise. In Chapter 1, applications requiring extreme environment sensing circuitry are briefly reviewed and the motivation for undertaking this study is outlined. A case is then presented for the use of SiGe BiCMOS technology to meet this need, documenting the benefits of operating SiGe HBTs at cryogenic temperatures. Chapter 1 concludes with a brief description of device radiation effects in bipolar and CMOS devices, and a basic overview of noise in semiconductor devices and electronic components. Chapter 2 further elaborates on a specific application requiring low-noise circuitry capable of operating at cryogenic temperatures and proposes a number of variants of band-gap reference circuits for use in said system. Detailed simulation and theoretical analysis of the proposed circuits are presented and compared with measurements, validating the techniques used in the proposed designs and emphasizing the need for further understanding of device level low-temperature noise phenomena. Chapter 3 evaluates the feasibility of using a SiGe BiCMOS process, whose response to ionizing radiation was previously uncharacterized, for use in unshielded electronic systems needed for exploration of deep space planets or moons, specifically targeting Europa mission requirements. Measured total ionizing dose (TID) responses for both CMOS and bipolar SiGe devices are presented and compared to similar technologies. The mechanisms responsible for device degradation are outlined, and an explanation of unexpected results is proposed. Finally, Chapter 4 summarizes the work presented and understanding provided by this thesis, concluding by outlining future research needed to build upon this study and fully realize SiGe based extreme environment capable precision electronic systems.