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Radiation Hardened System Design with Mitigation and Detection in FPGA

FPGAs are attractive devices as they enable the designer to make changes to the system during its lifetime. This is important in the early stages of development when all the details of the final system might not be known yet. In a research environment like at CERN there are many FPGAs used for this very reason and also because they enable high speed communication and processing. The biggest problem at CERN is that the systems might have to operate in a radioactive envi- ronment which is very harsh on electronics. ASICs can be designed to withstand high levels of radiation and are used in many places but they are expensive in terms of cost and time and they are not very flexible. There is therefore a need to understand if it is possible to use FPGAs in these places or what needs to be done to make it possible. Mitigation techniques can be used to avoid that a fault caused by radiation is disrupting the system. How this can be done and the importance of under- standing the underlying architecture of the FPGA is discussed in this thesis. A simulation tool used for injecting faults into the design is proposed in order to verify that the techniques used are working as expected which might not always be the case. The methods used during simulation which provided the best protec- tion against faults is added to a system design which is implemented on a flash based FPGA mounted on a board. This board was installed in the CERN Proton Synchrotron for 99 days during which the system was continuously monitored. During this time 11 faults were detected and the system was still functional at the end of the test. The result from the simulation and hardware test shows that with reasonable effort it is possible to use commercially available FPGAs in a radioactive environment.
Date January 2016
CreatorsSandberg, Hampus
PublisherLinköpings universitet, Datorteknik
Source SetsDiVA Archive at Upsalla University
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeStudent thesis, info:eu-repo/semantics/bachelorThesis, text

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