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2014 17th Euromicro Conference on Digital System Design (DSD) (2014)
Verona, Italy
Aug. 27, 2014 to Aug. 29, 2014
ISBN: 978-1-4799-5793-4
pp: 387-393
Physical Unclonable Functions PUFs are popular security primitives to provide cryptographic keys on FPGAs. However, PUFs require error correction to create reliable cryptographic keys. This work presents a highly optimized Viterbi decoder, adapted to the constraints of PUFs on FPGAs, primarily area but also low power. Our Seesaw architecture contains two block RAMs that are connected through a custom low-area data path. As main result, alternating data access patterns reduce the complexity of the data handling in the Viterbi decoder. Instead of translating through the entire trellis, we introduce a method that only operates on the last state. The new access pattern permits to store the intermediate results in block RAM and leads to a compact overall footprint with low register count. Synthesis results for one legacy and one state-of-the art FPGA, and a comparison to state-of-the-art implementations demonstrate the efficiency of our new Seesaw architecture. Our decoder requires only 65 FPGA slices and 2 block RAMs to carry out the entire Viterbi decoding for a popular (2, 1, [7]) convolutional code.
Random access memory, Field programmable gate arrays, Decoding, Convolutional codes, Viterbi algorithm, Computer architecture, Registers

M. Hiller, L. R. Lima and G. Sigl, "Seesaw: An Area-Optimized FPGA Viterbi Decoder for PUFs," 2014 17th Euromicro Conference on Digital System Design (DSD), Verona, Italy, 2014, pp. 387-393.
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