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Wide-range, reference free, on-chip voltage sensor for variable Vdd operations

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Delong Shang, Dr Fei Xia, Professor Alex Yakovlev


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In future systems with relatively unreliable and unpredictable energy sources such as harvesters, the system Vdd may become non-deterministic. Reliable and accurate on-chip voltage sensors are therefore indispensible for the power and computation management of such systems. Stable and known references are also difficult to obtain in this environment. This paper describes a reference-freevoltage sensor implemented using a speed independent (SI) SRAM cell and an inverter chain. It can work under a wide range of Vdd, and provides accurate measurements of Vdd over this operating range with a precision range from 50mV to 10mV. Unlike existing methods, the voltage information is directly generated as a digital code without any analog circuits. This is realized by exploiting the inherently different latency behaviors of different types of circuits under different Vdd.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Shang D, Xia F, Yakovlev A

Publication type: Conference Proceedings (inc. Abstract)

Publication status: Published

Conference Name: 2013 IEEE International Symposium on Circuits and Systems (ISCAS)

Year of Conference: 2013

Pages: 37-40

ISSN: 0271-4302

Publisher: IEEE


DOI: 10.1109/ISCAS.2013.6571776

Library holdings: Search Newcastle University Library for this item

ISBN: 9781467357609