Modeling and design of carbon nanotube interconnect for mixed-signal VLSI applications
Doctor of Philosophy
In future nanoscale integrated circuits, process technology scaling coupled with increasing operating frequencies will exacerbate the resistivity, electromigration, and delay problems that plague interconnect in today's designs. Metallic carbon nanotubes are a promising future replacement for on-chip copper interconnect due to their large conductivity and current carrying capabilities. In this research, we develop modeling and design techniques for carbon nanotube-based interconnect solutions. We create an equivalent RLC circuit model for individual and bundled single-walled and multi-walled carbon nanotubes, which we leverage to determine the optimal design for nanotube-based interconnect solutions. Using the proposed modeling and design techniques, we investigate the performance and reliability of nanotube-based structures in future mixed-signal VLSI applications including digital interconnect and passive components for analog integrated circuits. We also examine the nanotube properties and fabrication requirements necessary for nanotube-based interconnect to be a competitive solution compared to standard copper technology. The results indicate that nanotube-based interconnect solutions will have the potential to revolutionize the next generation of integrated circuits in mixed-signal VLSI applications.