New secure elements authenticate Qi 1.3 wireless charging - Embedded.com

New secure elements authenticate Qi 1.3 wireless charging

New devices from Microchip Technology meet requirements of new version WPC Qi 1.3 specification which mandates secure storage subsystem with secure key provisioning including X.509 certificates to cryptographically verify the source and quality of the certified power transmitter.

Microchip Technology has announced new secure elements to enable authentication of devices that use Qi 1.3 wireless charging. The new industrial grade TrustFLEX ECC608 and the automotive grade Trust Anchor TA100 combined with Microchip secure key provisioning services for Qi 1.3 power transmitters aims to offer an all-in-one secure storage subsystem that includes key provisioning for consumer and automotive systems.

The new version Qi 1.3 specification introduced in 2021 by the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC) mandates the addition of a secure storage subsystem with secure key provisioning including X.509 certificates to cryptographically verify the source and quality of the certified power transmitter. When a receiver, for example in a cell phone, is placed on a Qi 1.3 power transmitter, it may initially accept a 5W charge or no charge at all. Then after a successful X.509 based ECC authentication proving the charger is an approved, “do no harm” device, the phone will then safely accept a 15W charge significantly reducing charging time.

Microchip Qi 13 secure authentication
(Image: Microchip Technology)

The ECC608-TFLXWPC is the TrustFLEX pre-provisioned secure element part of Microchip’s Trust Platform, and its device configuration aims to meet the secure authentication requirements mandated by the WPC Qi 1.3. The configuration is defined to meet the basic authentication needs of Qi chargers that provide authentication. If needed, dual WPC certificate slots can also be implemented, with slot access policies set by the Trust Platform design suite tools prior to ordering the devices. Additional use cases might include instances where users want to provide TLS authentication from the embedded system where the charger is or to provide secure boot capabilities.

The Trust Anchor (TA100) is a secure element from Microchip’s portfolio of CryptoAutomotive security ICs for automotive security applications. It provides support for code authentication (secure boot), message authentication via MAC generation, support for trusted firmware updates, Qi 1.3 wireless charging authentication, multiple key management protocols including TLS and other root-of-trust based operations. It is typically a companion device to a microcontroller (MCU) or microprocessor (MPU) on the same board. It integrates multiple asymmetric, symmetric, and hashing security protocols supporting an ultra-secure method for key agreement, sign-verify authentication for automotive in-vehicle networking applications. The device is agnostic of MPU or MCU.

Microchip said it is now a WPC licensed manufacturing Certificate Authority (CA), which means it can handle the entire key authentication process with the WPC root certificate authority on behalf of its customers. The company said it can provide a complete certified reference design including application MCU, Qi 1.3 software stack, secure storage subsystems with supporting crypto library along with provisioning services for both automotive and consumer applications.

Development tools for the devices include the CryptoAuth Trust Platform development kit (DM320118) for the ECC608 TrustFLEX; and for the trust anchor, an 8-pin TA100 SOIC socket board (AC164166) or TA100 24-VQFN socket board (EV39Y17A) to plug into the CryptoAuth Trust Platform development kit.

The TrustFLEX ECC608 is available for purchase at $0.90 up to 10,000 units; and the TA100 is available starting at $1.50 in 10,000-unit quantities for SOIC8 and VQFN24.


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