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J. Low Power Electron. Appl. 2016, 6(2), 10; doi:10.3390/jlpea6020010

A 0.2 V, 23 nW CMOS Temperature Sensor for Ultra-Low-Power IoT Applications

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA 22904, USA
PsiKick Inc., Charlottesville, VA 22902, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Alexander Fish
Received: 1 April 2016 / Revised: 20 May 2016 / Accepted: 6 June 2016 / Published: 15 June 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from IEEE S3S Conference 2015)


We propose a fully on-chip CMOS temperature sensor in which a sub-threshold (sub-VT) proportional-to-absolute-temperature (PTAT) current element starves a current-controlled oscillator (CCO). Sub-VT design enables ultra-low-power operation of this temperature sensor. However, such circuits are highly sensitive to process variations, thereby causing varying circuit currents from die to die. We propose a bit-weighted current mirror (BWCM) architecture to resist the effect of process-induced variation in the PTAT current. The analog core constituting the PTAT, the CCO, and the BWCM is operational down to 0.2 V supply voltage. A digital block operational at 0.5 V converts the temperature information into a digital code that can be processed and used by other components in a system-on-chip (SoC). The proposed temperature sensor system also supports resolution-power trade-off for Internet-of-things (IoT) applications with different sampling rates and energy needs. The system power consumption is 23 nW and the maximum temperature inaccuracy is +1.5/−1.7 °C from 0 °C to 100 °C with a two-point calibration. The temperature sensor system was designed in a 130 nm CMOS technology and its total area is 250 × 250 μm2. View Full-Text
Keywords: proportional-to-absolute-temperature; process variation immunity; sub-threshold design; temperature sensor proportional-to-absolute-temperature; process variation immunity; sub-threshold design; temperature sensor

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Akella Kamakshi, D.; Shrivastava, A.; Calhoun, B.H. A 0.2 V, 23 nW CMOS Temperature Sensor for Ultra-Low-Power IoT Applications. J. Low Power Electron. Appl. 2016, 6, 10.

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J. Low Power Electron. Appl. EISSN 2079-9268 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
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