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Anatoly Yakovenko Presents Surprising Proposal: Ethereum as a Layer 2 Solution for Solana Blockchain

Anatoly Yakovenko, the co-founder of Solana Labs, has put forward a compelling idea that challenges prevailing assumptions in the blockchain community. Yakovenko suggests that utilizing Ethereum as a layer 2 solution for the Solana blockchain might not be as far-fetched as many have previously believed.

Layer 2 solutions have emerged as a means to enhance scalability for various blockchains. Several layer 2 protocols such as Arbitrum, Optimism, and zkSync have been developed on top of Ethereum to address transaction congestion and high fees.

On July 2, Yakovenko shared his thoughts in a series of tweets, proposing the concept of transforming Ethereum into a layer 2 solution for Solana through unidirectional cross-chain bridges. This arrangement would enable owners of SOL tokens on the Ethereum blockchain to securely convert their assets back to Solana.

Yakovenko acknowledged the technical challenges of such integration, citing the need for a substantial number of dank-sharding committees to handle the required data throughput. He emphasized that achieving a capacity of 10 gigabits per second would necessitate 625 concurrent committees working solely on Solana blocks at the network’s full capacity goal, which he considered to be a considerable stretch.

The co-founder also highlighted the potential delay in achieving finality, as well as the economic challenges Solana would face in outbidding all the Ethereum blocks simultaneously. He expressed doubts that the data availability of Ethereum 2.0 could match the wholesale prices that Solana validators benefit from.

Yakovenko stated that the main reason behind Solana’s efficiency is its protocol, which allows validators to consume increasing amounts of available bandwidth, thus amortizing network costs to closely align with wholesale bandwidth prices in data centers.

Despite the hurdles, Yakovenko asserted that Ethereum serving as a layer 2 solution for Solana might be more feasible than initially perceived. Layer 2 solutions act as bridge protocols, providing one-way security. In this proposed setup, holders of Solana assets on Ethereum would have guarantees of finality, allowing them to return to Solana even in the event of double spending or invalid state transitions on Ethereum.

To make this integration possible, Yakovenko outlined several necessary conditions. These include submitting all Ethereum transactions into Solana, providing a Simplified Payment Verification (SPV) root for the resulting state, and implementing a bridge timeout to allow for fault proofing.

Yakovenko also noted potential faults, such as conflicting SPVs for the root, invalid root computation (which could be verified using Neon Labs’ EVM), and the need for a relayer to ensure that transactions posted on Solana make their way to Ethereum.

It is important to highlight that while holding Solana assets on Ethereum would be considered safe, lending or maintaining positions against them would not. In the case of an Ethereum fault, the representation of Solana assets on Ethereum becomes detached from the social consensus fork of Ethereum. Therefore, lenders on Ethereum would receive worthless tokens, while borrowers could withdraw their assets on Solana and regain their original value.

Yakovenko further elaborated that censorship faults originating from Ethereum would render the Solana state root of Ethereum worthless. However, transactions posted on Solana could increase the gas fee to infinity, providing evidence of Ethereum’s failure.

This proposal introduces a thought-provoking perspective, challenging long-held assumptions about Ethereum and Solana. While there are significant technical and economic obstacles to overcome, Anatoly Yakovenko’s innovative idea highlights the evolving nature of the blockchain ecosystem and the potential for unexpected collaborations between prominent platforms. It remains to be seen whether the integration of Ethereum as a layer 2 solution for Solana will become a reality, but this development could signal a new era of interoperability and cooperation in the blockchain space.

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