A Novel High-Speed and Low-Voltage CMOS Level-Up/Down Shifter Design for Multiple-Power and Multiple-Clock Domain Chips

Ji-Hoon LIM  Jong-Chan HA  Won-Young JUNG  Yong-Ju KIM  Jae-Kyung WEE  

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Electronics   Vol.E90-C   No.3   pp.644-648
Publication Date: 2007/03/01
Online ISSN: 1745-1353
DOI: 10.1093/ietele/e90-c.3.644
Print ISSN: 0916-8516
Type of Manuscript: LETTER
Category: Electronic Circuits
dynamic voltage frequency scaling (DVFS),  voltage level shifter,  low-power design,  

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A novel high-speed and low-voltage CMOS level shifter circuit is proposed. The proposed circuit is suitable for block-level dynamic voltage and frequency scaling (DVFS) environment or multiple-clock and multiple-power-domain logic blocks. In order to achieve high performance in a chip consisting of logic blocks having different VDD voltages, the proposed circuit uses the circuit techniques to reduce the capacitive loading of input signals and to minimize the contention between pull-up and pull-down transistors through positive feedback loop. The techniques improve the slew rate of output signals, so that the level transient delay and duty distortions can be reduced. The proposed level up/down shifters are designed to operate over a wide range of voltage and frequency and verified with Berkeley's 65 nm CMOS model parameters, which can cover a voltage range from 0.6 to 1.6 V and at least frequency range up to 1000 MHz within 3% duty errors. Through simulation with Berkeley's 65 nm CMOS model parameters, the level shifter circuits can solve the duty distortion preventing them from high speed operation within the duty ratio error of 3% at 1 GHz. For verification through performance comparison with reported level shifts, the simulations are carried out with 0.35 µm CMOS technology, 0.13 µm IBM CMOS technology and Berkeley's 65 nm CMOS model parameters. The compared results show that delay time and duty ratio distortion are improved about 68% and 75%, respectively.