SmartLX - Advanced Secure Low Power Smart Card controller Platform

  • Gera-Fornvald, Erik-Kristian (Co-Investigator (CoI))
  • Steger, Christian (Co-Investigator (CoI))
  • Orehovec, Stefan (Co-Investigator (CoI))

Project: Research project

Project Details


The mayor success factors for identification technology in the furture are the technical
differentiation (cost, security, performace) and the availability of development tools which
both also determine the manufacturing costs. These costs can be reduced by using efficient
processor systems and IC architecture. By including the most security functionalities
directly into the CPU a reduction of the peripheral components of the digital subsystem
can be achieved. By using the FLASH-technology it will be possible to change the system
software in a costefficient manner.
To assure a long lifespan of the FLASH-memory, several wear-leveling concepts were developed.
Each block of the FLASH-memory can tolerate only a finite number of program/
erase cycles before becoming unreliable. The elaborated concepts are based on the
idea to relocate often used data between the blocks, so that program/erase cycles are
distributed evenly among all of the blocks in the device.
The functionality of wear-leveling is shown by the means of an hardware copier for the
SystemC model. SystemC is a classlibrary for C++ which extends the language by makros
and functions to model hardware. The implementation consists of a memory extension
for the 8051 C and a hardware copymachine for the flash memory. The XRAM module
is used as a manager module to administrate the access to EEPROM, RAM and FLASH
and also for the copier.
To securely exchange the system software in field, two concepts with different areas of
application were developed. The first concept covers the use case of an SmartCard like
identification badges, the second is based on the case of an UICC which is integrated into
a mobile phone. Both concepts are designed to assure confidentiality, authenticity and
integrity of system software while transmitted over insecure networks and devices.
Due to the present problem, a literature research was performed to depict the current
state of the art. Since the previous wear-leveling solutions are based on complex systems
(SSD, USB flash drive) the elaborated wear-leveling concepts had to be adapted to the
limited resources of the SmartCard platform. For the secure transfer of system software
there exists several specified concepts at the SmartCard-sector. These were adapted to
the current problem.
Effective start/end date21/09/1130/11/13


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