NASA has demonstrated a resolve to land instruments on the corrosive, high-pressure (~100 bar), high-temperature (470°C) surface of Venus. NASA Glenn Research Center’s JFET-R technology is the only one that has shown 1000’s of hours operation under Venus surface conditions. NASA desires computational analyses on the surface of Venus. Ozark IC is currently working on a NASA Phase II to create an all-SiC based RISC-V microprocessor in parallel with a rugged high-density packaging system. For this computational system to achieve maximum potential, access to a high temperature read only memory is critical. Companies like Cerfe and UPenn are creating high temperature thin film non-volatile memory (NVM) technologies. In this project, Ozark IC will utilize its extensive experience in rugged additive manufacturing to create a macro scale thick-film HT ROM technology as an alternative technology.
This proposal’s objective is an all-additive ROM that will integrate well with the JFET-R technology or accompany, off chip, a microprocessor module.
The project will design, simulate, package, and characterize an all-additive ROM technology based on materials that were qualified up to TRL-5 in previous NASA SBIR programs. This work will first attempt to create an all-additive ROM structure in which each bit is created, or “programmed” during manufacturing. Ozark IC will also investigate using this technology for programming the ROM once, after manufacturing. Each design will be tested at 500°C to validate feasibility of Venus surface operation. Parallel work will investigate SiC thin film options for ROMs as well as all the necessary read-out electronics using JFET-R for any of these ROM structures. The body of this work will culminate in a scalable ROM structure that can accompany the SiC RISC-V chipset in a single heterogenous package.
Ozark IC is well positioned to determine and address the requirements of these ROM memory structures from its work on the RISC-V microprocessor.
The proposed HT additive ROM is the next logical development step for enhancing computational power on the corrosive, high-pressure (~100 bar), high-temperature (up to 500˚C) Venus surface. The system will also be useful for other high temperature environments, such as Mercury, as well as high temperature avionics, re-entry, and propulsion sensing and controls.
Any application that needs very high temperature data collection is a potential market. Some examples include: geothermal exploration to improve drilling efficiency, jet engine sensing and actuation for distributed engine controls, avionics for high temperature sensing and actuation in hypersonic aircraft and health monitoring of molten salt reactors.