University of Miami School of Business Administration
Battery life is an important concern for modern embedded processors. Supply voltage scaling techniques can provide an order of magnitude reduction in energy. Current commercial memory technologies have been limited in the degree of supply voltage scaling that can be performed if they are to meet yield and reliability constraints. This has limited designers from exploring the near threshold operating regions for embedded processors. Summarizing prior work the authors show how proper sizing of memory cells can guarantee that the memory cell reliability in the near threshold supply voltage region matches that of a standard memory cell. However, this robustness comes with a significant area cost.