Modelling and Design of Advanced Reliable Circuits and Devices for Energy Efficiency


Reliable electronic systems, namely a set of reliable electronic devices connected to each other and working correctly together for the same functionality, represent an essential ingredient for the large-scale commercial implementation of any technological advancement. Microelectronics technologies and new powerful integrated circuits provide noticeable improvements in performance and cost-effectiveness, and allow introducing electronic systems in increasingly diversified contexts. On the other hand, opening of new fields of application leads to new, unexplored reliability issues. The development of semiconductor device and electrical models (such as the well known SPICE models) able to describe the electrical behavior of devices and circuits, is a useful means to simulate and analyze the functionality of new electronic architectures and new technologies. Moreover, it represents an effective way to point out the reliability issues due to the employment of advanced electronic systems in new application contexts. In this thesis modeling and design of both advanced reliable circuits for general-purpose applications and devices for energy efficiency are considered. More in details, the following activities have been carried out: first, reliability issues in terms of security of standard communication protocols in wireless sensor networks are discussed. A new communication protocol is introduced, allows increasing the network security. Second, a novel scheme for the on-die measurement of either clock jitter or process parameter variations is proposed. The developed scheme can be used for an evaluation of both jitter and process parameter variations at low costs. Then, reliability issues in the field of “energy scavenging systems” have been analyzed. An accurate analysis and modeling of the effects of faults affecting circuit for energy harvesting from mechanical vibrations is performed. Finally, the problem of modeling the electrical and thermal behavior of photovoltaic (PV) cells under hot-spot condition is addressed with the development of an electrical and thermal model

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