First Bitcoin Smart Contracts Sidechain Now Secured By 1 in 10 Miners


Just a few months after it was launched, sidechain, the first bitcoin smart contracts has reached an early milestone.

The milestone will be revealed on Monday during CoinDesk’s Consensus 2018 conference by RSK, the company that built the technology. According to RSK, sidechain will introduce the ethereum-style smart contracts to the largest digital currency in the world.

During its launch in January, the sidechain was very limited because it was not pegged to bitcoin in a “trustless” manner that crypto crusaders have promised over the time. Instead, moving bitcoin to sidechain should be approved by a ‘federation’ group of third parties. However, according to Gabriel Kurman, the co-founder of RSK Labs this is very impactful as it supports a concept that has been advanced to expand the functionality of bitcoin.

Although sidechain is secured by a fraction of the network, a large percentage of the miners have committed support in the future. According to Kurman the move will increase the hash power percentage in the coming few months.

The concept if based on the fact that sidechain is meant to be “merged-mined”, a process in which miners earn transaction fees by contributing their hash power to the sidechain. This is done using the same electricity, equipment and power which they are already using in mining bitcoin.

RSK’s lightning

Sidechain has been designed in such a way that it can handle more transactions compared to bitcoin. Sidechain makes use of what is referred to as “smart bitcoins.” This is a version of bitcoin that has the capability of smart contract and also allows more scalability.  The compression” technology pioneered by RSK cuts the amount of data that can be stored on the blockchain.

Howewver, even with this improvement, Kurman notes that it is not enough to make the technology available to the masses. In essence, Kurman acknowledges that sidechain still has some stability issues which today’s blockchains face.

RSK has been inspired by a group of developers who are working on ethereum and bitcoin, and who have been working on technologies called Raiden network and lightning network.