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IBM Research

Haifa Verification Conference 2008

IBM Haifa Labs


October 27-30, 2008
Organized by IBM Haifa Research Lab

Design and Verification Aspects of Soft Errors

Ilan Beer, IBM HRL

Soft errors are transient faults that occur during normal circuit operation, often as a result of a hit by cosmic rays or alpha particles. Reduced transistor size and low operation voltage make circuits more susceptible to soft errors. To ensure extremely low error rates in high-reliability systems, hardware designers add logic for soft error detection and correction. The effect of the added logic needs to be measured and verified, but the arsenal of tools that support this kind of verification is still limited. We will briefly describe the physical background, discuss various detection and recovery methods, and then focus on problems and solutions in verifying that a circuit meets its soft error reliability requirements.


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