Tattoo-Like Multi-Color Physically Unclonable Functions

KİREMİTLER N. B., Esidir A., Drake G. A., YAZICI A. F., Sahin F., TÖRÜN İ., ...More

Advanced Optical Materials, vol.12, no.12, 2024 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 12 Issue: 12
  • Publication Date: 2024
  • Doi Number: 10.1002/adom.202302464
  • Journal Name: Advanced Optical Materials
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Chemical Abstracts Core, Compendex, INSPEC
  • Keywords: electrospraying, physically unclonable function, polymers, security labels, semiconductor nanocrystals
  • Erciyes University Affiliated: Yes


Advanced anti-counterfeiting and authentication approaches are in urgent need of the rapidly digitizing society. Physically unclonable functions (PUFs) attract significant attention as a new-generation security primitive. The challenge is design and generation of multi-color PUFs that can be universally applicable to objects of varied composition, geometry, and rigidity. Herein, tattoo-like multi-color fluorescent PUFs are proposed and demonstrated. Multi-channel optical responses are created by electrospraying of polymers that contain semiconductor nanocrystals with precisely defined photoluminescence. The universality of this approach enables the use of dot and dot-in-rod geometries with unique optical characteristics. The fabricated multi-color PUFs are then transferred to a target object by using a temporary tattoo approach. Digitized keys generated from the red, green and blue fluorescence channels facilitate large encoding capacity and rapid authentication. Feature matching algorithms complement the authentication by direct image comparison, effectively alleviating constraints associated with imaging conditions. The strategy that paves the way for the development of practical, cost-effective, and secure anticounterfeiting systems is presented.