System Effects Test Example for Atmospheric Radiation Environment 2019-01-1865
Galactic cosmic rays and solar rays produce particle cascades in the atmosphere, where resulting particles (mainly high energy neutrons) can interact with components to cause Single Event Effects (SEE). The effects from atmospheric radiation can cause various fault conditions, including corrupted data, processor halts and interrupts, operational errors, and component latch ups requiring a power cycle. As technology trends continue to achieve higher densities and lower voltages, semiconductor devices are becoming more susceptible to atmospheric radiation effects. Testing to measure the susceptibility of a component or equipment to atmospheric radiation environments requires the utilization of highly advanced laboratory facilities. Testing can be performed at the component level to measure the device-level susceptibility, or the test can be performed to measure impacts at the equipment level. This paper provides an example of a test intended to measure equipment level effects while irradiating a single component. The purpose of the experiment was to validate the mitigations and protections designed into the equipment.