Ultradurable Embedded Physically Unclonable Functions.

Esidir A., Pekdemir S., Kalay M., Onses M. S.

ACS applied materials & interfaces, vol.16, no.13, pp.16532-16543, 2024 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 16 Issue: 13
  • Publication Date: 2024
  • Doi Number: 10.1021/acsami.4c01726
  • Journal Name: ACS applied materials & interfaces
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Chemical Abstracts Core, Compendex, EMBASE, INSPEC, MEDLINE
  • Page Numbers: pp.16532-16543
  • Keywords: dry etching, durability, electrospraying, photoresist, physically unclonable function
  • Kayseri University Affiliated: Yes


Physically unclonable functions (PUFs) have attracted growing interest for anticounterfeiting and authentication applications. The practical applications require durable PUFs made of robust materials. This study reports a practical strategy to generate extremely robust PUFs by embedding random features onto a substrate. The chaotic and low-cost electrohydrodynamic deposition process generates random polymeric features over a negative-tone photoresist film. These polymer features function as a conformal photomask, which protects the underlying photoresist from UV light, thereby enabling the generation of randomly positioned holes. Dry plasma etching of the substrate and removal of the photoresist result in the transfer of random features to the underlying silicon substrate. The matching of binary keys and features via different algorithms facilitates authentication of features. The embedded PUFs exhibit extreme levels of thermal (similar to 1000 degree celsius) and mechanical stability that exceed the state of the art. The strength of this strategy emerges from the PUF generation directly on the substrate of interest, with stability that approaches the intrinsic properties of the underlying material. Benefiting from the materials and processes widely used in the semiconductor industry, this strategy shows strong promise for anticounterfeiting and device security applications.