Autonomous Repair Fault Tolerant Dynamic Reconfigurable Device

Kentaro NAKAHARA  Shin'ichi KOUYAMA  Tomonori IZUMI  Hiroyuki OCHI  Yukihiro NAKAMURA  

Publication
IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Fundamentals of Electronics, Communications and Computer Sciences   Vol.E91-A   No.12   pp.3612-3621
Publication Date: 2008/12/01
Online ISSN: 1745-1337
DOI: 10.1093/ietfec/e91-a.12.3612
Print ISSN: 0916-8508
Type of Manuscript: Special Section PAPER (Special Section on VLSI Design and CAD Algorithms)
Category: Embedded, Real-Time and Reconfigurable Systems
Keyword: 
fault tolerance,  dependable,  FPGA,  reconfigurable device,  soft error,  

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Summary: 
Recently, reconfigurable devices are widely used in the fields of small amount production and trial production. They are also expected to be utilized in such mission-critical fields as space development, because system update and pseudo-repair can be achieved remotely by reconfiguring. However, in the case of conventional reconfigurable devices, configuration memory upsets caused by radiation and alpha particles reconfigure the device unpredictably, resulting in fatal system failures. Therefore, a reconfigurable device with high fault-tolerance against configuration upsets is required. In this paper, we propose an architecture of a fault-tolerant reconfigurable device that autonomously repairs configuration upsets by itself without interrupting system operations. The device consists of a 2D array of "Autonomous-Repair Cells" each of which repairs its upsets autonomously. The architecture has a scalability in fault tolerance; a finer-grained Autonomous-Repair Cell provides higher fault-tolerance. To determine the architecture, we analyze four autonomous repair techniques of the cell experimentally. Then, two autonomous repair techniques, simple multiplexing (S.M.) and memory multiplexing (M.M.), are applied; the former to programmable logics and the latter to cell-to-cell routing resources. Through evaluation, we show that proposed device achieves more than 10 years average lifetime against configuration upsets even in a severe situation such as a satellite orbit.