At today's International Solid State Circuit Conference (ISSCC), Holst Centre,
imec and TNO present a dual-gate-based
organic RFID chip with record data rate and lowest reported operating voltage.
For the first time, the advantages of dual gate transistors in circuit speed
and robustness have thereby been exploited in a complex organic-electronic circuit.
Organic RFID tags are one of the drivers of flexible electronics research and
development. Over the previous years, Holst Centre, imec and TNO, have been
successful in reporting state-of-the art results on major conferences, such
as ISSCC and IEDM. The current result of a 64-bit transponder circuit at 4.3kb/s
shows an improvement of over a factor two compared to the result reported last
year at ISSCC. What's more, results show that chips start to operate at
lower voltages (down to 10V), making them more suitable for capacitive and inductive
coupling with a readout station.
Main reason behind the increased performance is the use of a dual gate unipolar
transistor technology, adapted from rollable-display company Polymer Vision,
one of the partners in the Holst Centre research programs. Using a dual gate
allows controlling the threshold voltage (Vt) and the thus obtained multiple-Vt
technology leads to more robust circuits.
Dual-gate organic TFT (thin-film transistor) circuits have been reported before,
but had never surpassed the complexity of basic inverters. Thanks to the tight
collaboration within mixed teams of circuit designers and technology developers,
Holst Centre, imec and TNO now report 99-stage dual-gate ring oscillators in
various topologies, plus 64-bit RFID transponder chips using the same architecture.
Further and ongoing work will demonstrate the viability of the technology towards
industrial uptake. Holst Centre therefore gathers leading industrial players
from across the value chain around its shared research roadmaps. The work is
the result of a close collaboration between TNO and imec teams in Eindhoven
At this week's International Solid State Circuit Conference, imec and
Holst Centre present their newest breakthroughs in ultra-low power design for
wireless communications and wireless sensor networks and in organic electronics
with an impressive number of contributions including 10 reviewed publications
and 6 contributions to tutorials and workshops.