About ETRO  |  News  |  Events  |  Vacancies  |  Contact  
Home Research Education Industry Publications About ETRO

Master theses

Current and past ideas and concepts for Master Theses.

Multiscalar elliptic curve on GPU for accelerating zero-knowledge proof protocols


Second Promotor INDI: Prof. An Braeken
Privacy and security are ever so important, and they fall or stand with the performance and safety of cryptography and cryptographic implementations.
The Rust programming language has gotten a lot of traction and attention lately, and this especially true in the cryptographic communities.
This is because of its safety guarantees, and uncompromised performance.

Rust allows to safely abstract over cryptographic operations, and this thesis seeks the limit of these abstractions.
By abstracting over multiscalar multiplications using either lazy computation or macro operations, it is possible to dispatch larger computations, such as these necessary for zero-knowledge protocols, to a GPU.
This potentially increases performance of zero-knowledge provers and verifiers.

Kind of work

Build the necessary abstractions in the Rust language to integrate a high-performance GPGPU EC implementation with the existing EC and ZK ecosystem.
Benchmark the implementation and study the resulting latency-throughput trade-off, both stand-alone and integrated with existing proofs.

Framework of the Thesis

Our team with Kris Steenhaut and An Braeken is increasingly interested in

arkworks contributors. (2022). Arkworks zkSNARK ecosystem [Rust].
Dong, J., Zheng, F., Cheng, J., Lin, J., Pan, W., & Wang, Z. (2018). Towards High-performance X25519/448 Key Agreement in General Purpose GPUs. 2018 IEEE Conference on Communications and Network Security (CNS), 1–9.
Düll, M., Haase, B., Hinterwälder, G., Hutter, M., Paar, C., Sánchez, A. H., & Schwabe, P. (2015). High-speed Curve25519 on 8-bit, 16-bit, and 32-bit microcontrollers. Designs, Codes and Cryptography, 77(2–3), 493–514.
Mahé, E. M., & Chauvet, J.-M. (2014). Fast GPGPU-Based Elliptic Curve Scalar Multiplication (No. 198).
Valence, H. de, & Lovecruft, I. (2016). curve25519-dalek: A pure-Rust implementation of group operations on Ristretto and Curve25519.

Number of Students


Expected Student Profile

Interest in cryptography, knowledge of Rust or eager to learn Rust on very short notice.
Knowledge of assembly, C, embedded programming and elliptic cryptography is a plus, but can be learned throughout the project.


Prof. Dr. Ir. Kris Steenhaut

+32 (0)2 629 2977

more info


Mr. Ruben De Smet

+32 (0)2 629 2976

more info

Mr. Tom Godden

+32 (0)2 629 2930

more info

Mr. Thibaut Vandervelden

+32 (0)2 629 2930

more info

- Contact person




- Contact person

- Thesis proposals

- ETRO Courses

- Contact person

- Spin-offs

- Know How

- Journals

- Conferences

- Books

- Vacancies

- News

- Events

- Press


ETRO Department

Tel: +32 2 629 29 30

©2023 • Vrije Universiteit Brussel • ETRO Dept. • Pleinlaan 2 • 1050 Brussels • Tel: +32 2 629 2930 (secretariat) • Fax: +32 2 629 2883 • WebmasterDisclaimer