A Comparison of 25GHz-LC-VCO Circuit Topologies for SEU Mitigation in 22nm FinFET

Three LC-tank voltage-controlled oscillators (VCOs) are designed in a 22nm FinFET process with varactor and tail filter permutations to compare their sensitivity to single event upsets (SEUs) and understand the overhead these circuit techniques have on electrical performance. Each VCO has a tuning range from 15.8-25.9GHz yielding a tuning aware FOM of 186.12dBc/Hz for the radiation hardened VCO design. Furthermore, these three VCOs where tested at the Texas A&M Cyclotron Institute at linear energy transfer (LET) levels of 10, 35, and 70 MeVcm2/mg. Testing results showed both a marked decrease in the VCO area sensitive to radiation when using the rad hard varactor tank configuration, and the effectiveness of the LC tail filter for both phase noise and SEU mitigation.