This dissertation develops design methods and architectures which allow analog circuits to operate at VT + 2Vds,sat, the minimum supply for CMOS circuits with all transistors in the active region where Vds,sat is the drain to source saturation voltage of a MOS transistor. Techniques which meet this criteria for rail-to-rail input stages, gain enhancement stages, and output stages are discussed and developed. These techniques are used to design four fully-differential rail-to-rail amplifiers. The highest gain is shown to be attained using a drain voltage equalization (DVE) or active-bootstrapping technique which produces more than 100dB of gain in a two stage amplifier with a bulk-driven input pair while showing no bandwidth degradation when compared to amplifier architectures with similar biasing. The low voltage design techniques are extended to switching and sampling circuits. A 10-bit digital to analog converter (DAC) and a 10-bit analog to digital converter (ADC) are designed and fabricated in a 0.35um dual-well CMOS process to prove the developed design methods, architectures, and techniques. The 10-bit DAC operates at 1MSPS with near rail-to-rail differential output operation with a 700mV supply voltage. This supply voltage, which is 150mV lower than the VT+2Vds,sat limit, is attained by using a bulk driven threshold voltage lowering technique. The ADC design is a fully-differential pipelined 10-bit converter that operates at 500kSPS with a full scale input range equal to the supply voltage and can operate at supply voltages as low as 650mV, 200mV below the VT + 2Vds,sat limit. The design methods and architectures can be used in advanced processes to maintain gain and minimize supply voltage. These designs show a minimum supply improvement over previously published designs and prove the efficacy of the design architectures and techniques presented in this dissertation.



College and Department

Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology; Electrical and Computer Engineering



Date Submitted


Document Type





low-voltage, differential, amplifier, CMOS, ADC, DAC, bootstrap, gain-enhancement, analog