A radiation-hardened instrumentation amplifier (IA) that allows precise measurement in radiation environments, including nuclear power plants, space environments, and radiation therapy rooms, was designed and manufactured, and its characteristics were verified. Most electronic systems are currently designed using silicon-based complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) integrated circuits (ICs) to achieve a highly integrated low-power design. However, fixed charges induced in silicon by ionization radiation cause various negative effects, resulting in, for example, the generation of leakage current in circuits, performance degradation, and malfunction. Given that such problems in radiation environments may directly lead to a loss of life or environmental contamination, it is critical to implement radiation-hardened CMOS IC technology. In this study, an IA used to amplify fine signals of the sensors was designed and fabricated in the 0.18 μm CMOS bulk process. The IA contained sub-circuits that ensured the stable voltage supply needed to implement system-on-chip (SoC) solutions. It was also equipped with special radiation-hardening technology by applying an I-gate n-MOSFET that blocks the radiation-induced leakage currents. Its ICs were verified to provide the intended performance following a total cumulative dose of up to 25 kGy(Si), ensuring its safety in radiation environments.
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