Editor’s Note: This content is contributed by Nathan Menhorn, Embedded Software Engineer in the Core Vertical Markets


With security being a concern in most markets, why not take advantage of the built-in cryptographic hardware acceleration in the Zynq® UltraScale+™ MPSoCs and the Zynq UltraScale+ RFSoCs to accelerate all aspects of security?


Advantages over Software Only Solutions

Implementing cryptographic algorithms in software can be extremely slow, power hungry, and eat up large amounts of memory. Moving your cryptographic algorithms into hardware not only speeds up the algorithms and lets you deliver better-performing products but saves energy and allows developers to dedicate code space for other functionality.

Running wolfSSL, a Xilinx partner, on the Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC using hardware cryptographic acceleration yields tremendous performance improvements as shown in this latest white paper. A summary of the largest improvements over software is shown below:


Performance Improvement (Percentage)

AES-GCM 256-bit Encryption


AES-GCM 256-bit Decryption




RSA 2048 Public Encryption


RSA 2048 Private Decryption


RSA 4096 Public Encryption


RSA 4096 Private Decryption



Get up and Running Quickly

If you are new to cryptographic algorithms, Xilinx provides plenty of resources for developers to get the hardware cryptographic accelerators immediately up and running. The code provided on Xilinx’s github repository as well as the examples embedded in the Xilinx Software Development Kit (SDK) includes all the necessary drivers and examples of how to use the AES-GCM 256-bit engine, the SHA3 engine, and the RSA engine. Information regarding the use of the Arm® v8 cryptographic accelerators can be found from our partner wolfSSL as well as various resources including Arm.


To learn more on the specifics of Xilinx’s embedded cryptographic accelerators in the Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoCs and Zynq UltraScale+ RFSoCs, please take 10 minutes to read the following white paper.


Original Date: ‎06-04-2019