An Area Efficient On-Chip Hybrid Voltage Regulator

Selcuk Kose1,  Sally Pinzon2,  Bruce McDermott2,  Simon Tam3,  Eby Friedman1
1University of Rochester, 2Eastman Kodak, 3Intel Corporation


Experimental results of an active filter based on-chip hybrid voltage converter is described in this paper. The area of the voltage converter is significantly less than the area of a conventional passive filter based DC-DC voltage converter or a low-dropout (LDO) regulator. Hence, the proposed circuit is appropriate for point-of-load voltage regulation for the noise sensitive portions of an integrated circuit. The performance of the circuit has been verified with Cadence Spectre simulations and fabricated with a commercial 110 nm CMOS technology. The area of the voltage regulator is 0.015 mm$^2$ and delivers up to 80 mA of output current. The transient response with no output capacitor ranges from 72 ns to 192 ns. The parameter sensitivity of the active filter is also described. The advantages and disadvantages of an active filter based, conventional switching, linear, and switched capacitor voltage converters are compared. The proposed circuit provides a means for distributing multiple local power supplies across an integrated circuit while maintaining high current efficiency and fast response time within a small area.