A contract on Ethereum is holding 33.5 billion dollars worth of Ether. This translates into 8,641,954 Ether. The enormous sum of money is being left untouched because the funds can not be sent or even utilized. These funds are for a Beacon chain contract. It is also believed that this is a case of the world’s biggest contract on Ethereum that has billions held unused inside it.
About the Beacon Contracts
This 33.5 billion dollar contract is an Ethereum 2.0 Beacon Chain staking contract. This contract was initiated back in November last year. The funds, unfortunately, can not be utilized without a hard fork. What is even more intriguing is that the terms and conditions of the hard fork are not yet agreed upon. All the people that submitted their Ether into the contract were told of this and accepted it. The likelihood is that the terms and conditions of the hard fork will be agreed upon when Beacon Chain integrates with the Ethereum mainnet.
Ethereum is attempting to move out of a proof-of-work mining consensus. Instead, it wants to go to a proof-of-stake one. The Beacon Chain is the initial element at carrying this out. Traders must stake no less than 32 Ether to become a validator. Therefore, the fact that many users submitted their funds towards this end, shows that there is a lot of trust from users in the viability of Eth2.
Call to Test
Over two weeks ago, developers of Ethereum requested the Ethereum community to test out the Eth2 merger. The testing phase itself involves 3 stages. One phase is for users that are not technical in nature. Another stage is for developers with some but limited experience. The third phase is for developers that are extremely experienced and technically proficient.
What this merger may mean
Beacon Chain’s merger with the Ethereum mainnet would be the final aspect of the move to PoS Eth2. According to the official website for Ethereum, there is an indication that the merger may be finished by the first or second quarter of next year.
About Beacon Chain
Beacon Chain’s official web page on Ethereum.org states that Beacon Chain will not change how Ethereum is used. It however will allow for the coordination of the Ethereum network. Beacon Chain will present to the Ethereum ecosystem proof-of-stake capabilities. According to the site, this can be considered the “Phase 0” of the project’s technical roadmap.
The Ethereum website adds that Beacon Chain will allow for the coordination and conduction of the expanded network. Beacon Chain will accomplish this using stakers and shards. However, they do add that this will not be like Ethereum Mainnet. Its limitations include smart contracts and accounts which it can not handle. Ethereum’s website states that the role of the Beacon Chain will evolve over time. However, it is highlighted that regardless of this evolution, the blockchain would remain sustainable, secure, and scalable.
Establishing Shard Chains
The next upgrade after Mainnet becomes integrated with Beacon Chain is will herald the usage of shard chains. These shard chains will help grow the capabilities of the blockchain network. The shards will also help increase the speed of transactions by furthering the network to 64 blockchains. It is necessary for Beacon Chain to be first introduced because it is the only way shard chains can work securely for staking.
At a later point, Beacon Chain will handle stakers through random assignments for validation of shard chains. This is also another important step that the initiative will take. The reason is that without it stakers have the capacity to collude. However, with it, the technology makes it very difficult for that to be at all possible. According to the Ethereum blockchain, once the technology is running it will make it less than a 1 in a trillion chance for successful collusion.