Multigate device

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A dual-gate MOSFET and schematic symbol Transistor DG MOSFET 1.png
A dual-gate MOSFET and schematic symbol

A multigate device or multiple-gate field-effect transistor (MuGFET) refers to a MOSFET (metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor) that incorporates more than one gate into a single device. The multiple gates may be controlled by a single gate electrode, wherein the multiple gate surfaces act electrically as a single gate, or by independent gate electrodes. A multigate device employing independent gate electrodes is sometimes called a multiple-independent-gate field-effect transistor (MIGFET).

MOSFET transistor used for amplifying or switching electronic signals

The metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor is a type of field-effect transistor (FET), most commonly fabricated by the controlled oxidation of silicon. It has an insulated gate, whose voltage determines the conductivity of the device. This ability to change conductivity with the amount of applied voltage can be used for amplifying or switching electronic signals. A metal-insulator-semiconductor field-effect transistor or MISFET is a term almost synonymous with MOSFET. Another synonym is IGFET for insulated-gate field-effect transistor.

Contents

Multigate transistors are one of the several strategies being developed by CMOS semiconductor manufacturers to create ever-smaller microprocessors and memory cells, colloquially referred to as extending Moore's law. [1]

Transistor semiconductor device used to amplify and switch electronic signals and electrical power

A transistor is a semiconductor device used to amplify or switch electronic signals and electrical power. It is composed of semiconductor material usually with at least three terminals for connection to an external circuit. A voltage or current applied to one pair of the transistor's terminals controls the current through another pair of terminals. Because the controlled (output) power can be higher than the controlling (input) power, a transistor can amplify a signal. Today, some transistors are packaged individually, but many more are found embedded in integrated circuits.

CMOS technology for constructing integrated circuits

Complementary metal–oxide–semiconductor (CMOS) is a technology for constructing integrated circuits. CMOS technology is used in microprocessors, microcontrollers, static RAM, and other digital logic circuits. CMOS technology is also used for several analog circuits such as image sensors, data converters, and highly integrated transceivers for many types of communication. Frank Wanlass patented CMOS in 1963 while working for Fairchild Semiconductor.

A semiconductor material has an electrical conductivity value falling between that of a metal, like copper, gold, etc. and an insulator, such as glass. Their resistance decreases as their temperature increases, which is behaviour opposite to that of a metal. Their conducting properties may be altered in useful ways by the deliberate, controlled introduction of impurities ("doping") into the crystal structure. Where two differently-doped regions exist in the same crystal, a semiconductor junction is created. The behavior of charge carriers which include electrons, ions and electron holes at these junctions is the basis of diodes, transistors and all modern electronics. Some examples of semiconductors are silicon, germanium, and gallium arsenide. After silicon, gallium arsenide is the second most common semiconductor used in laser diodes, solar cells, microwave frequency integrated circuits, and others. Silicon is a critical element for fabricating most electronic circuits.

Development efforts into multigate transistors have been reported by AMD, Hitachi, IBM, Infineon Technologies, Intel Corporation, TSMC, Freescale Semiconductor, University of California, Berkeley, and others, and the ITRS predicted correctly that such devices will be the cornerstone of sub-32 nm technologies. [2] The primary roadblock to widespread implementation is manufacturability, as both planar and non-planar designs present significant challenges, especially with respect to lithography and patterning. Other complementary strategies for device scaling include channel strain engineering, silicon-on-insulator-based technologies, and high-κ/metal gate materials.

Advanced Micro Devices American multinational semiconductor company

Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD) is an American multinational semiconductor company based in Santa Clara, California and Austin, Texas that develops computer processors and related technologies for business and consumer markets. While initially it manufactured its own processors, the company later outsourced its manufacturing, a practice known as fabless, after GlobalFoundries was spun off in 2009. AMD's main products include microprocessors, motherboard chipsets, embedded processors and graphics processors for servers, workstations and personal computers, and embedded systems applications.

IBM American multinational technology and consulting corporation

International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) is an American multinational information technology company headquartered in Armonk, New York, with operations in over 170 countries. The company began in 1911, founded in Endicott, New York, as the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company (CTR) and was renamed "International Business Machines" in 1924.

Infineon Technologies company

Infineon Technologies AG is a German semiconductor manufacturer founded on 1 April 1999, when the semiconductor operations of the parent company Siemens AG were spun off to form a separate legal entity. As of 30 September 2018, Infineon had 40,100 employees worldwide. In fiscal year 2018, the company achieved sales of €7.599 billion.

Dual-gate MOSFETs are commonly used in very high frequency (VHF) mixers and in sensitive VHF front-end amplifiers. They are available from manufacturers such as Motorola, NXP Semiconductors, and Hitachi. [3] [4] [5]

Very high frequency class of radio waves

Very high frequency (VHF) is the ITU designation for the range of radio frequency electromagnetic waves from 30 to 300 megahertz (MHz), with corresponding wavelengths of ten meters to one meter. Frequencies immediately below VHF are denoted high frequency (HF), and the next higher frequencies are known as ultra high frequency (UHF).

Motorola, Inc. was an American multinational telecommunications company founded on September 25, 1928, based in Schaumburg, Illinois. After having lost $4.3 billion from 2007 to 2009, the company was divided into two independent public companies, Motorola Mobility and Motorola Solutions on January 4, 2011. Motorola Solutions is generally considered to be the direct successor to Motorola, as the reorganization was structured with Motorola Mobility being spun off. Motorola Mobility was sold to Google in 2012, and acquired by Lenovo in 2014.

NXP Semiconductors company

NXP Semiconductors N.V. is a Dutch global semiconductor manufacturer headquartered in Eindhoven, Netherlands. The company employs approximately 31,000 people in more than 35 countries, including 11,200 engineers in 33 countries. NXP reported revenue of $6.1 billion in 2015, including one month of revenue contribution from recently merged Freescale Semiconductor.

Types

Several multigate models Multigate models.png
Several multigate models

Dozens of multigate transistor variants may be found in the literature. In general, these variants may be differentiated and classified in terms of architecture (planar vs. non-planar design) and the number of channels/gates (2, 3, or 4).

Planar double-gate transistor

The first international demonstration of the multigate devices family using thin Silicon film was performed with a double-gate MOSFET [ [6] ]. The double-gate control of silicon-on-insulator (SOI) transistors was used to force the whole silicon film (interface layers and volume) in strong inversion (called “Volume-Inversion MOSFET”) or strong accumulation (called “Volume-Accumulation MOSFET”). This original method of transistor operation, at the origin of the unique electrostatic properties and scalability of multigate devices, offered excellent device performance, in particular, great increases in subthreshold slope, transconductance, and drain current. A simulation program and experiments on SIMOX structures was used to study this new type of device.

Planar double-gate transistors employ conventional planar (layer by layer) manufacturing processes to create double-gate devices, avoiding more stringent lithography requirements associated with non-planar, vertical transistor structures. In planar double-gate transistors the drain–source channel is sandwiched between two independently fabricated gate/gate-oxide stacks. The primary challenge in fabricating such structures is achieving satisfactory self-alignment between the upper and lower gates. [7]

FlexFET

FlexFET is a planar, independently double-gated transistor with a damascene metal top gate MOSFET and an implanted JFET bottom gate that are self-aligned in a gate trench. This device is highly scalable due to its sub-lithographic channel length; non-implanted ultra-shallow source and drain extensions; non-epi raised source and drain regions; and gate-last flow. FlexFET is a true double-gate transistor in that (1) both the top and bottom gates provide transistor operation, and (2) the operation of the gates is coupled such that the top gate operation affects the bottom gate operation and vice versa. [8] Flexfet was developed and is manufactured by American Semiconductor, Inc.

FinFET

A double-gate FinFET device Doublegate FinFET.PNG
A double-gate FinFET device
An SOI FinFET MOSFET FINFET MOSFET.png
An SOI FinFET MOSFET
The NVIDIA GTX 1070, which uses a 16 nm Pascal chip manufactured by TSMC NVIDIA-GTX-1070-FoundersEdition-FL.jpg
The NVIDIA GTX 1070, which uses a 16 nm Pascal chip manufactured by TSMC

The term FinFET (fin field-effect transistor) was coined in 2001 by University of California, Berkeley, researchers (Profs. Chenming Hu, Tsu-Jae King-Liu and Jeffrey Bokor) to describe a nonplanar, double-gate transistor built on an SOI substrate, [9] based on the earlier DELTA (single-gate) transistor design. [10] [11] [12] The FinFET is a variation on traditional MOSFETs distinguished by the presence of a thin silicon "fin" inversion channel on top of the substrate, allowing the gate to make two points of contact: the left and right sides of the fin. The thickness of the fin (measured in the direction from source to drain) determines the effective channel length of the device. The wrap-around gate structure provides a better electrical control over the channel and thus helps in reducing the leakage current and overcoming other short-channel effects.

In current usage the term FinFET has a less precise definition. Among microprocessor manufacturers, AMD, IBM, and Freescale describe their double-gate development efforts as FinFET [13] development, whereas Intel avoids using the term when describing their closely related tri-gate architecture. [14] In the technical literature, FinFET is used somewhat generically to describe any fin-based, multigate transistor architecture regardless of number of gates.

A 25 nm transistor operating on just 0.7  volt was demonstrated in December 2002 by TSMC (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company). The "Omega FinFET" design is named after the similarity between the Greek letter omega (Ω) and the shape in which the gate wraps around the source/drain structure. It has a gate delay of just 0.39  picosecond (ps) for the N-type transistor and 0.88 ps for the P-type.

FinFET can also have two electrically independent gates, which gives circuit designers more flexibility to design with efficient, low-power gates. [15]

In 2012, Intel started using FinFETs for its future commercial devices. Leaks suggest that Intel's FinFET has an unusual shape of a triangle rather than rectangle, and it is speculated that this might be either because a triangle has a higher structural strength and can be more reliably manufactured or because a triangular prism has a higher area-to-volume ratio than a rectangular prism, thus increasing switching performance. [16]

In September 2012, GlobalFoundries announced plans to offer a 14-nanometer process technology featuring FinFET three-dimensional transistors in 2014. [17] The next month, the rival company TSMC announced start early or "risk" production of 16 nm FinFETS in November 2013. [18]

In March 2014, TSMC announced that it is nearing implementation of several 16 nm FinFETs die-on wafers manufacturing processes: [19]

AMD released GPUs using their Polaris chip architecture and made on 14 nm FinFET in June 2016 [20] . The company has tried to produce a design to provide a "generational jump in power efficiency" while also offering stable frame rates for graphics, gaming, virtual reality, and multimedia applications. [21]

In March 2017, Samsung and eSilicon announced the tapeout for production of a 14 nm finFET ASIC in a 2.5D package. [22] [23]

Tri-gate (3D) transistor

Tri-gate or 3D transistor (not to be confused with 3D microchips) fabrication is used by Intel Corporation for the nonplanar transistor architecture used in Ivy Bridge, Haswell and Skylake processors. These transistors employ a single gate stacked on top of two vertical gates (a single gate wrapped over 3 sides of the channel), allowing essentially three times the surface area for electrons to travel. Intel reports that their tri-gate transistors reduce leakage and consume far less power than current transistors. This allows up to 37% higher speed or a power consumption at under 50% of the previous type of transistors used by Intel. [24] [25]

Intel explains: "The additional control enables as much transistor current flowing as possible when the transistor is in the 'on' state (for performance), and as close to zero as possible when it is in the 'off' state (to minimize power), and enables the transistor to switch very quickly between the two states (again, for performance)." [26] Intel has stated that all products after Sandy Bridge will be based upon this design.

Intel was the first company to announce this technology. In September 2002, [27] Intel announced their creation of "triple-gate transistors" to maximize "transistor switching performance and decreases power-wasting leakage". A year later, in September 2003, AMD announced that it was working on similar technology at the International Conference on Solid State Devices and Materials. [28] [29] No further announcements of this technology were made until Intel's announcement in May 2011, although it was stated at IDF 2011, that they demonstrated a working SRAM chip based on this technology at IDF 2009. [30]

On April 23, 2012, Intel released a new line of CPUs, termed Ivy Bridge, which feature tri-gate transistors. [31] [32] Intel has been working on its tri-gate architecture since 2002, but it took until 2011 to work out mass-production issues. The new style of transistor was described on May 4, 2011, in San Francisco. [33] Intel factories are expected to make upgrades over 2011 and 2012 to be able to manufacture the Ivy Bridge CPUs. [34] As well as being used in Intel's Ivy Bridge chips for desktop PCs, the new transistors will also be used in Intel's Atom chips for low-powered devices. [33]

The term tri-gate is sometimes used generically to denote any multigate FET with three effective gates or channels.

Gate-all-around (GAA) FET

Gate-all-around FETs are similar in concept to FinFETs except that the gate material surrounds the channel region on all sides. Depending on design, gate-all-around FETs can have two or four effective gates. Gate-all-around FETs have been successfully characterized both theoretically and experimentally. [35] [36] They have also been successfully etched onto InGaAs nanowires, which have a higher electron mobility than silicon. [37]

Industry need

Planar transistors have been the core of integrated circuits for several decades, during which the size of the individual transistors has steadily decreased. As the size decreases, planar transistors increasingly suffer from the undesirable short-channel effect, especially "off-state" leakage current, which increases the idle power required by the device. [38]

In a multigate device, the channel is surrounded by several gates on multiple surfaces. It thus provides a better electrical control over the channel, allowing more effective suppression of "off-state" leakage current. Multiple gates also allow enhanced current in the "on" state, also known as drive current. Multigate transistors also provide a better analog performance due to a higher intrinsic gain and lower channel length modulation. [39] These advantages translate to lower power consumption and enhanced device performance. Nonplanar devices are also more compact than conventional planar transistors, enabling higher transistor density which translates to smaller overall microelectronics.

Integration challenges

The primary challenges to integrating nonplanar multigate devices into conventional semiconductor manufacturing processes include:

Compact modeling

Different FinFET structures, which can be modeled by BSIM-CMG Different FinFET structures which can be modeled by BSIM-CMG.png
Different FinFET structures, which can be modeled by BSIM-CMG

BSIMCMG106.0.0, [40] officially released on March 1, 2012 by UC Berkeley BSIM Group, is the first standard model for FinFETs. BSIM-CMG is implemented in Verilog-A. Physical surface-potential-based formulations are derived for both intrinsic and extrinsic models with finite body doping. The surface potentials at the source and drain ends are solved analytically with poly-depletion and quantum mechanical effects. The effect of finite body doping is captured through a perturbation approach. The analytic surface potential solution agrees closely with the 2-D device simulation results. If the channel doping concentration is low enough to be neglected, computational efficiency can be further improved by a setting a specific flag (COREMOD = 1).

All of the important multi-gate (MG) transistor behavior is captured by this model. Volume inversion is included in the solution of Poisson’s equation, hence the subsequent I–V formulation automatically captures the volume-inversion effect. Analysis of electrostatic potential in the body of MG MOSFETs provided a model equation for short-channel effects (SCE). The extra electrostatic control from the end gates (top/bottom gates) (triple or quadruple-gate) is also captured in the short-channel model.

See also

Related Research Articles

SiGe, or silicon-germanium, is an alloy with any molar ratio of silicon and germanium, i.e. with a molecular formula of the form Si1−xGex. It is commonly used as a semiconductor material in integrated circuits (ICs) for heterojunction bipolar transistors or as a strain-inducing layer for CMOS transistors. IBM introduced the technology into mainstream manufacturing in 1989. This relatively new technology offers opportunities in mixed-signal circuit and analog circuit IC design and manufacture. SiGe is also used as a thermoelectric material for high temperature applications.

Silicon on insulator (SOI) technology refers to the use of a layered silicon–insulator–silicon substrate in place of conventional silicon substrates in semiconductor manufacturing, especially microelectronics, to reduce parasitic device capacitance, thereby improving performance. SOI-based devices differ from conventional silicon-built devices in that the silicon junction is above an electrical insulator, typically silicon dioxide or sapphire. The choice of insulator depends largely on intended application, with sapphire being used for high-performance radio frequency (RF) and radiation-sensitive applications, and silicon dioxide for diminished short channel effects in microelectronics devices. The insulating layer and topmost silicon layer also vary widely with application.

A MESFET is a field-effect transistor semiconductor device similar to a JFET with a Schottky (metal-semiconductor) junction instead of a p-n junction for a gate.

Threshold voltage

The threshold voltage, commonly abbreviated as Vth, of a field-effect transistor (FET) is the minimum gate-to-source voltage VGS (th) that is needed to create a conducting path between the source and drain terminals. It is an important scaling factor to maintain power efficiency.

FinFET semiconductor manufacturing process

A Fin Field-effect transistor (FinFET) is a MOSFET built on a substrate where the gate is placed on two, three, or four sides of the channel or wrapped around the channel, forming a double gate structure. These devices have been given the generic name "finfets" because the source/drain region forms fins on the silicon surface. The FinFET devices have significantly faster switching times and higher current density than the mainstream CMOS technology.

The 32 nanometer (32 nm) node is the step following the 45 nanometer process in CMOS semiconductor device fabrication. "32 nanometer" refers to the average half-pitch of a memory cell at this technology level. Intel and AMD both produced commercial microchips using the 32 nanometer process in the early 2010s. IBM and the Common Platform also developed a 32 nm high-κ metal gate process. Intel began selling its first 32 nm processors using the Westmere architecture on 7 January 2010.

Charge Trap Flash (CTF) is a semiconductor memory technology used in creating non-volatile NOR and NAND flash memory. The technology differs from the more conventional floating-gate MOSFET technology in that it uses a silicon nitride film to store electrons rather than the doped polycrystalline silicon typical of a floating gate structure. This approach allows memory manufacturers to reduce manufacturing costs five ways:

  1. Fewer process steps are required to form a charge storage node
  2. Smaller process geometries can be used
  3. Multiple bits can be stored on a single flash memory cell.
  4. Improved reliability
  5. Higher yield since the charge trap is less susceptible to point defects in the tunnel oxide layer

SONOS, short for "silicon–oxide–nitride–oxide–silicon", more precisely, "polycrystalline silicon"—"silicon dioxide"—"silicon nitride"—"siicon dioxide"—"silicon", is a cross sectional structure of MOSFET, realized in late 70's. This structure is often used for non-volatile memories, such as EEPROM and flash memories. It is sometimes used for TFT LCD displays. It is one of CTF (charge trap flash) variants. It is distinguished from traditional non-volatile memory structures by the use of silicon nitride (Si3N4 or Si9N10) instead of "polysilicon-based FG (floating-gate)" for the charge storage material. A further variant is "SHINOS" ("silicon"—"hi-k"—"nitride"—"oxide"—"silicon"), which is substituted top oxide layer with high-κ material. Another advanced variant is "MONOS" ("metal–oxide–nitride–oxide–silicon"). Companies offering SONOS-based products include Cypress Semiconductor, Macronix, Toshiba, United Microelectronics Corporation and Floadia.

The 22 nanometer (22 nm) node is the process step following the 32 nm in CMOS semiconductor device fabrication. The typical half-pitch for a memory cell using the process is around 22 nm. It was first introduced by semiconductor companies in 2008 for use in memory products, while first consumer-level CPU deliveries started in April 2012.

The 14 nanometer technology node is the successor to the 22 nm/(20 nm) node. The 14 nm was so named by the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS). One nanometer (nm) is one billionth of a meter. Until about 2011, the node following 22 nm was expected to be 16 nm. The first 14 nm scale devices were shipped to consumers by Intel in 2014.

LDMOS transistors are used in microwave/RF power amplifiers. These transistors are often fabricated on p/p+ silicon epitaxial layers. The fabrication of LDMOS devices mostly involves various ion-implantation and subsequent annealing cycles. As an example, The drift region of this power MOSFET is fabricated using up to three ion implantation sequences in order to achieve the appropriate doping profile needed to withstand high electric fields.

Advanced-Random Access Memory (A-RAM) is a type of dynamic random-access memory (DRAM) based on single-transistor capacitor-less cells. A-RAM was invented in 2009 at the University of Granada (UGR), in Spain, in collaboration with the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), in France. It was conceived by Noel Rodriguez (UGR), Francisco Gamiz (UGR) and Sorin Cristoloveanu (CNRS). A-RAM is compatible with single-gate silicon on insulator (SOI), double-gate, FinFETs and multiple-gate field-effect transistors (MuFETs).

Per the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors, the 45 nanometer (45 nm) technology node should refer to the average half-pitch of a memory cell manufactured at around the 2007–2008 time frame.

In semiconductor manufacturing, the International Roadmap for Devices and Systems defines the 5 nanometer (5 nm) node as the technology node following the 7 nm node.

Polysilicon depletion effect is the phenomenon in which unwanted variation of threshold voltage of the MOSFET devices using polysilicon as gate material is observed, leading to unpredicted behaviour of the electronic circuit. Polycrystalline silicon, also called polysilicon, is a material consisting of small silicon crystals. It differs from single-crystal silicon, used for electronics and solar cells, and from amorphous silicon, used for thin film devices and solar cells.

The IEEE International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM) is an annual micro- and nanoelectronics conference held each December that serves as a forum for reporting technological breakthroughs in the areas of semiconductor and related device technologies, design, manufacturing, physics, modeling and circuit-device interaction.

The field-effect transistor (FET) is an electronic device which uses an electric field to control the flow of current. This is achieved by the application of a voltage to the gate terminal, which in turn alters the conductivity between the drain and source terminals.

Suman Datta is the Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and Frank M. Freimann Chair Professor of Engineering at the University of Notre Dame from 2016.

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