Ethereum Layer 2 scaling solution Polygon is considering a major upgrade to its main Proof-of-Stake blockchain.
Mihailo Bjelic, one of the network’s co-founders, shared a Polygon Improvement Proposal in a governance forum on Tuesday. Bjelic invited the community to discuss the proposal, which calls for shifting the chain’s current architecture to zkEVM validium.
2/ The upgrade would demonstrate the caliber of Polygon's ZK technology and introduce major benefits to users and devs.
If the proposal passes, Polygon PoS and its $2B in assets, millions of users, and thousands of apps would seamlessly migrate to this bleeding-edge technology.
— Polygon (Labs) (@0xPolygonLabs) June 20, 2023
The new version would utilize zero-knowledge (zk) technology to increase network security, improve decentralization, eliminate chain reorgs, and increase scalability. Polygon has already launched a zk-Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) compatible rollup network, but the proposed upgrade would bring zk-technology to the main PoS chain.
Unlike the zkEVM solution launched in March, the mainchain upgrade will not be a “rollup” which bundles transaction data and executes transfers off-chain, before sending data back to the main network.
The “validium” solution will instead store the transaction data off-chain, and block producers are only required to publish block headers to Ethereum. A block header contains information about the block itself and typically includes a timestamp and a hash representation of block data.
The fact that validiums have such a small on-chain footprint gives them two major advantages over rollups – lower transaction fees and higher scalability.
According to Bjelic, the Polygon team has deemed the upgrade to be fairly straightforward, requiring relatively simple upgrades to the Polygon PoS bridge and client implementations. If the upgrade is approved by the protocol governance process, it would likely be activated on the mainnet between February and March next year.
“This will be a first: an existing chain upgrading to a ZK L2, and it will mean that Polygon PoS can integrate with the Polygon 2.0 ecosystem, which offers unlimited scalability and unified liquidity, powered by ZK tech,” commented Brenden Farmer, co-founder of Polygon Zero.