Post-Quantum Signatures on RISC-V with Hardware Acceleration

Patrick Karl, Jonas Schupp, Tim Fritzmann, Georg Sigl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


CRYSTALS-Dilithium and Falcon are digital signature algorithms based on cryptographic lattices, which are considered secure even if large-scale quantum computers will be able to break conventional public-key cryp- tography. Both schemes have been selected for standardization in the NIST Post-Quantum competition. In this work, we present a RISC-V HW/SW codesign that aims to combine the advantages of software and hardware implementations, i.e., flexibility and performance. It shows the use of flexible hardware accelerators, which have been previously used for Public-Key Encryption (PKE) and Key-Encapsulation Mechanism (KEM), for Post-Quantum signatures. It is optimized for Dilithium as a generic signature scheme but also accelerates applications that require fast verification of Falcon's compact signatures. We provide a comparison with pre- vious works showing that for Dilithium and Falcon, cycle counts are significantly reduced, such that our design is faster than previous software implementations or other HW/SW codesigns. In addition to that, we present a compact Globalfoundries 22 nm ASIC design that runs at 800 M Hz . By using hardware accelera- tion, energy consumption for Dilithium is reduced by up to 92 . 2%, and up to 67 . 5% for Falcon's signature verification.

Original languageEnglish
Article number30
JournalACM Transactions on Embedded Computing Systems
Issue number2
StatePublished - 27 Mar 2024


  • CRYSTALS-Dilithium
  • Falcon
  • HW/SW codesign
  • Post-Quantum
  • RISC-V
  • digital signatures


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