Conception sur mesure d'un FPGA durci aux radiations à base de mémoires magnétiques

Abstract : The aim of the thesis was to show that MRAM memory has many advantages for use as a configuration memory for reconfigurable architectures and especially Field Programmable Gate-Arrays (FPGAs). This type of component is programmable and allows designing a digital circuit simply by programming memory cells that define its functionality. An FPGA is thus mainly composed of memory cells. That is why they largely determine its characteristics as its surface or power consumption and affect its performance as its speed. MRAM memories are composed of Magnetic Tunnel Junctions (JTMs) which store information in the form of a magnetization. A JTM is composed of three layers: two layers of ferromagnetic material separated by an insulating layer. One of the two ferromagnetic layers has a magnetization pinned in a fixed direction (reference layer) while the other one can have its magnetization switched between two directions (storage layer). Thus, the propagation of the electrons is changed depending on whether the two magnetizations are parallel or antiparallel that is to say that the electrical resistance of the junction changes according to the orientation of the magnetizations. It is low when the magnetizations are parallel and high when antiparallel. Writing a JTM consists in changing the orientation of the magnetization of the storage layer while reading consists in determining if the resistance is high or low. The advantages of the JTM make it a good candidate to be used as a universal memory although research efforts are still needed. However, it has many advantages such as non-volatility, fast and low power consumption compared to writing to Flash memory as well as resistance to radiation. With these advantages, we may already use it in some applications and in particular in the field of space. Indeed, its use in this area allows taking advantage of all of the benefits of JTM due to the fact that it is intrinsically immune to radiation and non-volatile. It therefore enables to make a radiation hardened and low power FPGA with new functionalities. The work of this thesis is held over three years. The first year was dedicated to the state of the art in order to learn the mechanisms of JTMs, the architecture of FPGAs, radiation hardening and low power consumption techniques as well as the operation of the tools used in microelectronics. After the first year, a new FPGA architecture concept was proposed. The second and third years were devoted to the realization of this innovation with the search for the best circuit structure and the realization of an elementary component of a FPGA and the design and manufacture of a demonstrator. The demonstrator has been successfully tested and proved the new concept. The new circuit architecture of FPGA has shown that the use of MRAM cells as configuration memories for FPGAs was particularly advantageous for future technologies.
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Olivier Gonçalves. Conception sur mesure d'un FPGA durci aux radiations à base de mémoires magnétiques. Autre. Université de Grenoble, 2013. Français. ⟨NNT : 2013GRENT016⟩. ⟨tel-00935118⟩

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