Memristor processor solves mazes

March 10, 2011 | Source: The physics ArXiv blog

(Illustration: Yuriy V. Pershin and Massimiliano Di Ventra)

A memristor processor that solves mazes has been designed by engineers Yuriy Pershin at the University of South Carolina and Massimiliano Di Ventra at the University of California, San Diego.

Memristors are resistors that “remember” the state they were in, which changes according to the current passing through them. They are expected to revolutionize the design and capabilities of electronic circuits and may even make possible brain-like architectures in silicon, since neurons behave like memristors.

Pershin and Di Ventra begin by creating a kind of a universal maze in the form of a grid of memristors, an array in which each node is connected to another by a memristor and a switch. This can be made to represent any regular maze by switching off certain connections within the array.

The maze was solved by connecting a voltage across the start and finish of the maze and waiting. The current flows only along those memristors that connect the entrance and exit points. This changes the state of those memristors, allowing them to be easily identified. The chain of these memristors is then the solution.

Ref: Solving Mazes With Memristors: A Massively-Parallel Approach