Zilliqa is a high-performance blockchain platform for decentralized applications that was introduced in 2017 and founded by a team of academics, entrepreneurs, and engineers from the National University of Singapore. Its testnet went live in March 2018 while in January 2019, the platform launched its mainnet.
Zilliqa leverages the technology of sharding in which the network is divided into smaller groups of nodes each referred to as a shard. Each shard can independently process transactions. This architecture allows nodes to process only a fraction of the network’s transactions, enabling the platform to support more transactions into several interconnected blockchains in parallel, thus ensuring that the throughput in Zilliqa linearly increases with the size of the network.
Central to Zilliqa is the Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance (PBFT) governance mechanism that keeps the distributed network of computers in sync. Using PBFT, all the nodes within a shard are ordered in a sequential manner by the primary and backup nodes. Thus they agree before a block is finalized and combined into the blockchain. Each node is subsequently rewarded with a portion of the block reward for validating the transactions.
The ZIL is the platform’s native asset. It can be used to navigate the Zilliqa blockchain by executing smart contracts and paying transaction fees. ZIL is further paid out as a reward to nodes for securing the network. Zilliqa has a fixed maximum supply of 21 billion ZIL tokens.
Sharding is a database partitioning process that allows parallel transactions processing. Whenever a transaction reaches the network it gets assigned to a specific shard and is independently processed in order to yield high throughput to the network.
Zilliqa introduces the Sharding technology where more transactions are possible even by adding more nodes to the network. With this scalability solution, if more people start using the blockchain its capacity will be increased simply by extending the sharding.
Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance (PBFT)
In PBFT, each blockchain shard relies on a group of nodes to confirm a subsection of all the transactions, and once each shard has reached a consensus, the second group of nodes confirms the shards' collective results and adds a new block to the blockchain. This means that if PBFT is used to reach consensus on the next block, then the proposed block is final and the agreement is exact.
Zilliqa network reaches over 2,500 transactions per second.
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