A method is provided for a radiationhardened (rad-hard) solid-state drive for space mission memory applications by combining rad-hard and commercial offthe- shelf (COTS) non-volatile memories (NVMs) into a hybrid architecture. The architecture is controlled by a rad-hard ASIC (application specific integrated circuit) or a FPGA (field programmable gate array). Specific error handling and data management protocols are developed for use in a rad-hard environment. The rad-hard memories are smaller in overall memory density, but are used to control and manage radiation-induced errors in the main, and much larger density, non-rad-hard COTS memory devices.

Small amounts of rad-hard memory are used as error buffers and temporary caches for radiation-induced errors in the large COTS memories. The rad-hard ASIC/FPGA implements a variety of error-handling protocols to manage these radiation-induced errors. The large COTS memory is triplicated for protection, and CRC-based counters are calculated for sub-areas in each COTS NVM array. These counters are stored in the rad-hard non-volatile memory. Through monitoring, rewriting, regeneration, triplication, and long-term storage, radiation-induced errors in the large NV memory are managed. The rad-hard ASIC/FPGA also interfaces with the external computer buses.

This work was done by Douglas J. Sheldon of Caltech for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. For more information, download the Technical Support Package (free white paper) at www.techbriefs.com/tsp under the Semiconductors & ICs category. NPO-46925