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Title: The contribution of low-energy protons to the total on-orbit SEU rate

Low- and high-energy proton experimental data and error rate predictions are presented for many bulk Si and SOI circuits from the 20-90 nm technology nodes to quantify how much low-energy protons (LEPs) can contribute to the total on-orbit single-event upset (SEU) rate. Every effort was made to predict LEP error rates that are conservatively high; even secondary protons generated in the spacecraft shielding have been included in the analysis. Across all the environments and circuits investigated, and when operating within 10% of the nominal operating voltage, LEPs were found to increase the total SEU rate to up to 4.3 times as high as it would have been in the absence of LEPs. Therefore, the best approach to account for LEP effects may be to calculate the total error rate from high-energy protons and heavy ions, and then multiply it by a safety margin of 5. If that error rate can be tolerated then our findings suggest that it is justified to waive LEP tests in certain situations. Trends were observed in the LEP angular responses of the circuits tested. As a result, grazing angles were the worst case for the SOI circuits, whereas the worst-case angle was at or nearmore » normal incidence for the bulk circuits.« less
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  1. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
  2. Vanderbilt Univ., Nashville, TN (United States)
  3. Freescale Semiconductor, Austin, TX (United States)
  4. Altera Corp., San Jose, CA (United States)
  5. Swift Engineering and Radiation Services, San Jose, CA (United States)
  6. Brigham Young Univ., Provo, UT (United States)
  7. Univ. of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK (Canada)
  8. BAE Systems. Manassas, VA (United States)
  9. US Naval Research Lab., Brookneal, VA (United States)
  10. TRIUMF, Vancouver, BC (Canada)
  11. Cisco Systems, San Jose, CA (United States)
  12. Broadcom Corp., Irvine, CA (United States)
  13. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD (United States)
  14. Cypress Semiconductor, San Jose, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 0018-9499; 614053
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
IEEE Transactions on Nuclear Science
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 62; Journal Issue: 6; Journal ID: ISSN 0018-9499
Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Research Org:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
Country of Publication:
United States
73 NUCLEAR PHYSICS AND RADIATION PHYSICS; single-event effects; proton direct ionization; error rate prediction; angular effects; secondary protons
OSTI Identifier: