Hardware fault tolerance for binary RRAM crossbars

TitleHardware fault tolerance for binary RRAM crossbars
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsA Chaudhuri, B Yan, Y Chen, and K Chakrabarty
Conference NameProceedings International Test Conference
Date Published11/2019

Resistive random-access memory (RRAM)-based computing systems (RCS) are being advocated for neural network acceleration. The memristor is the unit cell of an RCS and it is susceptible to process variations and manufacturing defects. Therefore, it is essential to tolerate faulty memristors to ensure intended system operation. We present the architecture of a novel processing element to tolerate both stuck-at and undefined-state faults in binary RRAM cells. We also describe a 4T1R reconfigurable cell-based crossbar design with an ancillary 3T mesh to provide 100% hardware fault tolerance for random and clustered fault distributions for up to 50% fault density. The proposed 4T1R cell is 2.04× smaller than the state-of-the-art neuromorphic SRAM cell. Evaluation results for binary pattern-matching and digit recognition applications demonstrate the effectiveness of our fault tolerance methodology.