The mystery of the Zombie RAM

josh.com

It all started one bright morning when I wondered: Can the RAM memory on an AVR chip continue to store data after power is removed? If it can hold the data even just for a brief moment, then that could be very useful in a project I am working on.

To test it, I wrote a tiny little program that would check for a a special value in RAM (a “magic cookie”) upon power up and light an LED if it saw the right value…

I also built a very simple circuit with an ATTINY4313 so I could try turning the power off for various amounts of time to get a feel for how long the memory would last without power…

RAM test circuit NC

The idea is that you press the button for a little while to remove power from the chip. If the LED goes on when you let go, then the…

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