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Quartzdyne ASIC Developments
Keywords: ASIC, 225C, Design
Quartzdyne Pressure Transducers incorporate circuits that require reliable operation at high temperature, low voltage and low power. Die cost and availability are major impediments to designing high temperature electronics. High precision quartz based transducers include reliable oscillator circuitry, a stable voltage regulator, and a frequency counter. These constraints are overcome by designing custom ASICs utilizing a commercially available 0.8m bulk silicon CMOS process. Two new 225C rated ASICs were developed, a voltage regulator and a frequency counter. The voltage regulator was designed in response to the obsolescence of a commercial voltage reference die. The voltage regulator is based on a standard CMOS band gap topology, utilizing high temperature design techniques. The low dropout 2.5V regulator includes a microprocessor reset for use in digital systems. It has been shown to function above 250C, while demonstrating more than 8000 hrs of powered life functionality at 225C. The Frequency Counter was designed to replace an expensive, high current drawing FPGA, while adding new features. The IC compatible device counts the 2 low frequency signals and reports the ratio of signal to the reference clock. Hybrids based on this chip have 2.3x less current draw than the prior generation at 225C, while showing functionality at 275C. Both ASIC designs are a part of a long term plan to increase transducer functionality, remove unreliable parts, and decrease hybrid costs.
Shane Rose, Electrical Engineer
Salt Lake City, UT

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