This article has been in the writing for some time and we approached it by asking ourselves questions that we though a community member would have asked in the first place. Below you will find a list with those questions. There’s a lot of information, so you can skip to the ones that spark your interest if you want a quick read.
We are a team of rockstar engineers that tackle complex software projects and strive to deliver comprehensive solutions.
If you want us to take you to our leader, then that’s sumamu.
While looking to fund our work on similar projects by reaching out to other cryptocurrency communities such as Thorchain, we found out about Zenon’s Accelerator-Z funding program and started learning more about it. We decided to participate into the Hyperspace program that has a specific call to action for interoperability solutions.
It gives us the opportunity to build on a promising network, while being rewarded for our efforts.
We’ve been working with similar tech before and we believe Zenon has huge growth potential in the mid and long-run.
Basically a full-stack cross-chain solution that will enable the flow of assets between Zenon and other blockchains.
The bridge will be based on a lock-and-release mechanism that will allow users to transfer assets to and from Zenon (swap ZNN to wrapped ZNN on other chains and vice-versa).
By coding it, of course. But before that, there’s a lot of research that we’ve done and a lot more still to be done.
We’ve delegated members of our team for the following tasks: researching existing bridging solutions, learning their faults, assessing their limitations, learning the go-zenon codebase, and also keeping in touch with the community (we know, that can be improved).
With what we’ve learned so far, we’re able to give you some of the details that we’re fairly certain of.
The bridge will have the following components:
A new embedded contract is needed in order to allow the secure storage of funds. Our first approach was creating a Zenon address based on a EdDSA pubkey, which we successfully accomplished (including all the necessary unit testing). This work was not in vain since it will later enable us to develop custom multisig tech compatible with Zenon. However upon further research, better ways to design the bridge architecture have been discovered: via the embedded contracts. Although it will be a challenge to get them included into go-zenon, we are confident that the community will support us in this endeavor.
EVM blockchains will store the funds in smart contracts. To swap assets to Zenon, users will simply need to send them to the smart contract specifying the Zenon address where the funds will be released to. Users will also be able to redeem funds by providing a valid TSS signature when calling the smart contract.
TSS is state-of-the-art cryptography that enables distributing access to an address between multiple parties. Just like multisig, TSS allows signing a message with a threshold of M out of N, but unlike multisig addresses, it looks and behaves much like a regular address. This also means that no information about the co-signers is published on-chain.
The participating nodes will provide the infrastructure needed to run the bridge components. They will be running the bridge logic, the go-zenon node (znnd) and the corresponding nodes for each supported network (geth for ETH/BNB Smart Chain, bitcoind for BTC, etc). They will also store and secure the secret shares used to generate the TSS pubkeys.
We are aware of the exploits happening right now in the cross-chain bridges space. That’s exactly why we will employ a multi-layered security approach and we’ll get into the details in a dedicated post. One security layer that we’re testing is an innovative delay mechanism, which will allow additional security measures to kick-in and halt operations if abnormal activity is detected.
Internal audits will be the first ones to be performed. The community will also have the opportunity to audit the entire code and efforts will be made to engage external parties to perform extensive security audits after the code is open sourced.
The architecture is designed with support for EVM chains such as Ethereum, BNB Smart Chain and at a later time it will be possible to offer support for Bitcoin.
Any ERC-20/BEP-20 token can be integrated as long as a ZTS counterpart exists. Supporting wZNN and later on wQSR is the primary objective.
The first iteration will run on Pillars, since they already fulfill most of the requirements for running the entire stack and are most invested into the ecosystem. For the next iteration we are taking into consideration running the entire stack on Sentinels, since there’s already an incentivization mechanism present, and that mechanism can be used to incentivize bridge participants.
There will be fees as they are necessary for preventing spam and as a way to incentivize nodes participating in the bridge.
During the first iteration, participants will be incentivized via fees. In the next iteration rewards will be distributed based on participation.
There wasn’t much public activity on this topic, but internally we’ve been very busy. At this point we’ve been able to fulfill all technical requirements for on-ramp and off-ramp.
Users will be able to interact with the bridge using any means accessible to them. Most users will likely use Web3 apps, since these are already being developed. At a later time, more ways to interact with the bridge will become available. Ideally the bridge will also be directly integrated into the Syrius wallets.
All testing is currently being performed internally. As we make additional progress we’ll also be looking into ways to open public beta testing.
We’re expecting to be able to deliver publicly accessible infrastructure by November.
We’ll leverage the already present spork system and create a pull request for the project.
By the end of the year, but even earlier if everything goes as expected.
It’s difficult to make an estimation at this point, but one thing is for sure: it will be outweighed by the amount of time and energy required by this kind of project (in terms of complexity) and the value that it will provide to the entire ecosystem both in the short and long term. We’ll be posting updates as we make progress and follow-up milestones with Accelerator projects to cover R&D costs. Starting with this post we’ll also be creating the first A-Z project and phase for covering the research we’ve done so far.
We intend to become a major contributor to the ecosystem and use most of the funds to establish our presence into the network.
We’ll assess the needs of the ecosystem together with the community and do our best to deliver where our skills meet the demand.
We understand that taking the time to read this post means you are also part of the ecosystem and/or interested in growing it, so we invite you to follow the progress and support our efforts.