University of Idaho
Process variation is known to have a significant effect on transistor power consumption. This paper quantifies the impact of threshold voltage variation on aging-related hard failure rates in a high-performance 65nm processor. Simulations show that threshold voltage variations can accelerate aging substantially, depending on the thermal resistance of the heat-sink and the total leakage power of the processor before variation. For unfavorable values of these parameters, the authors' models suggest that the time at which 1% of the processors have failed can decrease by about 60%.