Method and apparatus for sampling and predicting rare events in complex electronic devices, circuits and systems

The invention provides methods for enhancing circuit reliability under statistical process variation. For highly replicated circuits such as SRAMs and flip flops, a rare statistical event for one circuit may induce a not-so-rare system failure. To combat this, the invention discloses the method called "Statistical Blockade," a Monte Carlo-type technique that allows the efficient filtering-blocking-of unwanted samples insufficiently rare in the tail distributions of interest, with speedups of 10-100x. Additionally, the core Statistical Blockade technique is further extended in a "recursive" or "bootstrap" formulation to create even greater efficiencies under a much wider variety of circuit performance metrics, in particular two-sided metrics such a Data Retention Voltage (DRV) which prior Monte Carlo techniques could not handle.

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US 20090248387.jpg

US 20,090,248,387


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