Fault Awareness And Reliability Improvements In a Fault-Tolerant RISC-V SoC (HARV-SoC)


A technical paper titled “Enhancing Fault Awareness and Reliability of a Fault-Tolerant RISC-V System-on-Chip” was published by researchers at University of Montpellier and University of Vale do Itajaí.


“Recent research has shown interest in adopting the RISC-V processors for high-reliability electronics, such as aerospace applications. The openness of this architecture enables the implementation and customization of the processor features to increase their reliability. Studies on hardened RISC-V processors facing harsh radiation environments apply fault tolerance techniques in the processor core and peripherals, exploiting system redundancies. In prior work, we present a hardened RISC-V System-on-Chip (SoC), which could detect and correct radiation-induced faults with limited fault awareness. Therefore, in this work, we propose solutions to extend the fault observability of the SoC implementation by providing error detection and monitoring. For this purpose, we introduce observation features in the redundant structures of the system, enabling the report of valuable information that supports enhanced radiation testing and support the application to perform actions to recover from critical failures. Thus, the main contribution of this work is a solution to improve fault awareness and the analysis of the fault models in the system. In order to validate this solution, we performed complementary experiments in two irradiation facilities, comprehending atmospheric neutrons and a mixed-field environment, in which the system proved to be valuable for analyzing the radiation effects on the processor core and its peripherals. In these experiments, we were able to obtain a range of error reports that allowed us to gain a deeper understanding of the faults mechanisms, as well as improve the characterization of the SoC.”

Find the technical paper here. Published: June 2023.

Santos, Douglas A., André M. P. Mattos, Douglas R. Melo, and Luigi Dilillo. 2023. “Enhancing Fault Awareness and Reliability of a Fault-Tolerant RISC-V System-on-Chip” Electronics 12, no. 12: 2557. https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics12122557.

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