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Equihash is a memory-hard Proof-of-Work introduced by the University of Luxembourg's Interdisciplinary Centre for Security, Reliability and Trust (SnT) at the 2016 Network and Distributed System Security Symposium.[1] The algorithm is based on a generalization of the Birthday problem which finds colliding hash values. It has severe time-space trade-offs but concedes vulnerability to unforeseen parallel optimizations.[2] It was designed such that parallel implementations are bottle-necked by memory bandwidth in an attempt to worsen the cost-performance trade-offs of designing custom ASIC implementations. ASIC resistance in Equihash is based on the assumption that commercially-sold hardware already has quite high memory bandwidth, so improvements made by custom hardware may not be worth the development cost.


Equihash was proposed by Alex Biryukov and Dmitry Khovratovich as part of the University of Luxembourg research group CryptoLUX. It was introduced at the Network and Distributed System Security Symposium 2016 in San Diego. Notable blockchain-based projects such as ZCash and Aion have integrated Equihash for reasons such as security, privacy, and ASIC miner resistance.

The manufacturer Bitmain has succeeded in optimizing the processing of the algorithm with an ASIC.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Prisco, Giullio (February 16, 2017). "How the Equihash Algorithm Could Democratize Zcash Mining". NASDAQ. Retrieved 6 Oct 2018.
  2. ^ Biryukov, Alex; Khovratovich, Dmitry (2017). "Equihash: Asymmetric Proof-of-Work Based on the Generalized Birthday Problem: Open Review". 2. ISSN 2379-5980. Retrieved 7 October 2018.
  3. ^ Dölle, Mirko (June 26, 2018). "End of the graphics card era: 8000 ASIC Miners for Zcash, Bitcoin Gold & Co". Heise (in German). Retrieved 6 Oct 2018.