IEEE Electron Device Letters

A 4.2-ps ECL ring-oscillator in a 285-GHz f MAX SiGe technology

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This letter reports on the room temperature operation of a conventional SiGe bipolar ECL ring oscillator with a minimum stage delay of 4.2 ps for ∼250 mV single ended voltage swing. To our knowledge, this is the lowest reported delay for a gate fabricated using transistor devices. The circuit uses 0.12 × 2 μm 2 emitter size SiGe n-p-n transistors with a room temperature f T of 207 GHz and f MAX (unilateral gain extrapolation) of 285 GHz. The ring oscillator was studied as a function of various device and circuit parameters and it was found that minimum delay is more dependent on the parasitic resistance and capacitance in the n-p-n device than on pure transit time across the device.