True Random Number Generation using Latency Variations of Commercial MRAM Chips

Farah Ferdaus, B. M. S. Bahar Talukder, Mehdi Sadi, Md Tauhidur Rahman

The emerging magneto-resistive RAM (MRAM) has considerable potential to become a universal memory technology because of its several advantages: unlimited endurance, lower read/write latency, ultralow-power operation, high-density, and CMOS compatibility, etc. This paper will demonstrate an effective technique to generate random numbers from energy-efficient consumer-off-the-shelf (COTS) MRAM chips. In the proposed scheme, the inherent (intrinsic/extrinsic process variation) stochastic switching behavior of magnetic tunnel junctions (MTJs) is exploited by manipulating the write latency of COTS MRAM chips. This is the first system-level experimental implementation of true random number generator (TRNG) using COTS toggle MRAM technology to the best of our knowledge. The experimental results and subsequent NIST SP-800-22 suite test reveal that the proposed latency-based TRNG is acceptably fast (~22 Mbit/s in the worst case) and robust over a wide range of operating conditions.

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