Enabling Full-Size Public-Key Algorithms on 8-bit Sensor Nodes

Leif Uhsade, Dipl.-Kfm. Axel Poschmann, Chris­tof Paar

European Workshop on Security and Privacy in Ad hoc and Sensor Networks 2007 (ESAS 2007), Cambridge, UK July 2-3, 2007.


In this article we present the fastest known implementation of a modular multiplication for a 160-bit standard compliant elliptic curve (secp160r1) for 8-bit micro controller which are typically used in WSNs. The major part (77%) of the processing time for an elliptic curve operation such as ECDSA or EC Di?e-Hellman is spent on modular multiplication. We present an optimized arithmetic algorithm which signi?cantly speed up ECC schemes. The reduced processing time also yields a signi?cantly lower energy consumption of ECC schemes. With our implementation results we can show that a 160-bit modular multiplication can be performed in 0.39 ms on an 8-bit AVR processor clocked at 7.37 MHz. This brings the vision of asymmetric cryptography in the ?eld of WSNs with all its bene?ts for key-distribution and authentication a step closer to reality

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