Improving radiation hardness of EEPROM/flash cell by N 2 O annealing

Tiao Yuan Huang*, Fuh Cheng Jong, Tien-Sheng Chao, Horng-Chih Lin, Len Yi Leu, Konrad Young, Chen Hsi Lin, Kuang Y. Chiu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


The effects of an N 2 O anneal on the radiation effects of a split-gate electrical erasable programmable read only memory (EEPROM)/flash cell with a recently-proposed horn-shaped floating gate were studied. We have found that although the cells appear to survive 1 Mrad(Si) Co 60 irradiation without data retention failure, the write/erase cycling endurance was severely impeded after irradiation. Specifically, the write/erase cycling endurance was degraded to 20 K from the pre-irradiation value of 50 K. However, by adding an N 2 O annealing step after the interpoly oxidation, the after-irradiation write/erase cycling endurance of the resultant cell can be significantly improved to over 45 K. N 2 O annealing also improves the after-irradiation program and erase efficiencies. The N 2 O annealing step therefore presents a potential method for enhancing the robustness of the horn-shaped floating-gate EEPROM/flash cells for radiation-hard applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)256-258
Number of pages3
JournalIEEE Electron Device Letters
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1 Jul 1998


  • Eeprom/flash cells
  • Horn-shaped floating-gate
  • N o annealing
  • Radiation hardness


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