Sidechains - Crypto Academy / S4W8 - Homework post for pelon53.

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Hello Crypto Lovers,

It is a new week in this season. This is week 8 corresponding to season 4 in the cypto academy. I am Kehinde Micheal and my username is @msquaretwins here on this great platform. I have read and understood the topic presented by Prof. @pelon53 on sidechains in the intermediate class. Therefore, in this post, I will be answering the questions posted in the homework section. Happy reading!


1. Explain in detail the Sidechains with the use of ZK-Rollups.


Many early blockchain have some set back especially inform of scalability and efficiency. This makes it difficult to process data, and as a result, transaction are often slow or sluggish to process.

And as we know, many decentralized projects like DeFi, Smart contract, Games, oracles, data project that do not have their own blockchain do build their project on some blockchain and for some blockchain with the aforementioned problem, it then becomes more difficult for them to process a bulk of transaction going on their network. And as such, the parameters or specification which some projects need may not go along with their project. This is where sidechains come in.

Do you remember the equilibrium of forces or equilibrium concept of metre rule and loads in elementary physics? The meter rule is often regarded as beam. You remember that when a beam is carrying a load bigger than what it can carry, we do support it with fulcrum or load in either side or any section of the beam to get stability. In that case, the support given to the beam helps it to attain stability which in turns make it to be efficient and work properly.

Sidechains in blockchain can be likened to a fulcrum that helps to support a beam of loads. Sidechains are separate blockchain which act as extension of parent blockchain. They are attached to the blockchain to increase the speed, scalability and efficiency of the main chain or blockchain. Sidechains help the crypto asset or token of the main chain to be used in another blockchain and also aid in the transfer of the token or crypto asset back to the main chain. Therefore, sidechains can be described as off chain protocol

Just like sidechains, ZK-Rollups which is otherwise called Zero Knowledge Rollup are blockchain protocol that help to increase or improve the capacity of blockchain. The emergence of ZK rollups is attributed to the plasma research. Plasma happens to be the name of a research construction that was created on layer 2 upon Ethereum blockchain in form of sidechain to solve the problem of scalability.


The application of plasma make it possible for many transactions to be running on Ethereum blockchain. But the layer 2 project also suffered the issue of scalability and consequently, users require large amount of data to be able to withdraw from the sidechain and this is where Zk- rollup comes into play.

Zk rollup is an improved 2nd layer scalability that help to solve the issue of scalability of blockchain. Zk-rollups solve the issue of scalability by processing a bulk of hundreds of transaction by rolling them into one transaction. one transaction is processed per second by Plasma but hundreds of transaction are processed by Zk-rollup.

Zk rollup uses zero knowledge of proof to tender and record the validity of block. As such, the computing and storage power are drastically reduced and this in turns reduces the data in the transaction.

Zk rollup function with the help of two types of users, the users that initiate the transaction on the network which are otherwise called transactors and those who relay the transaction who are often called relayers.

The transactors initiate the transaction and then send it to the network. The transaction data, which consist of the address of the sender, the address that is receiving it, the amount, the nonce and the network fee are displayed. The transaction data is then recorded in two separate Merkel tree by smart contract. The addresses are recorded in one Merkel and the amounts in the other.

The relayers then collect the bundles of transaction and then form roll up. Relayers create the Snark proof which is the hash that dictate the state of the blockchain.

Advantages of ZK- Rollup

• It is associated with less data and that in turns improve the speed and the scalability of the blockchain.
• The blocks are computed in the parallel form in ZK roll up and this preach decentralization.
• ZK rollup had capacity to process a bulk of hundreds of transaction per second.
• It is very fast and efficient when compared to Plasma layer 2 construction.

Disadvantages of ZK-Rollup

• Maximum throughput of data mathematical procedure and optimization is required to to create zero proof of knowledge in ZK roll up.
• It is difficult to compute the proof of validity
• Transaction can be influenced by the operators.


2. Explain the Liquid Network side chain


It has been observed that many blockchain is suffering from low throughput which in turns causes blockchain scalability issue and as such the transactions done on most blockchain are very slow. High network fee and congestion in network and pending transaction are also part of the result of low scalability. To resolve this issues, so many blockchain are using side chain to improve and increase the scalability.


Liquid network sidechain is a Bitcoin sidechain protocol that was built on Bitcoin blockchain to increase and improve the scalability, speed and cost of bitcoin transaction volume. It was designed by blockstream and was launched in Oct 2018. The digital token used in Liquid network is Liquid Bitcoin (L-BTC). This token is pegged to native token of blockchain on which it is built.

Liquid network sidechain procedure starts as a carbon copy of Bitcoin blockchain before it is allowed to go live. The transaction that are carried out on liquid network sidechain need not to be recorded in the main chain or parent blockchain's block and as such, the network fee is zero.

Liquid network is done by it members which are majorly large institutions, brokers and big exchanges. The blockstream has no power to control the network it simply serve as the provider. Liquid network uses an approach called strong federation. This is an approach that removes the proof of work protocol used in bitcoin blockchain and substitutes it with the group of mutually participants called functionaries.

The functionaries act as block signers and watchmen on the liquid network. Block signers operate the liquid network sidechain. They keep record of the block height and the block they have already signed. The block under normal circumstance is created every minute which means it is faster than the corresponding pareny blockchain. The watchmen are in charge of the security of bitcoin sent to the network.

The aim of Liquid Network chain is to help transfer the bitcoin from the bitcoin blockchain to the sidechain. To achieve this, two pegs are used. The peg Ins and peg outs.


In peg in, to transfer are employed. The first one is done on the bitcoin network in which the transfer of some amount of BTC is initiated and sent to the Liquid network. The second one is inform of claiming the transfer but in this case, it is done on liquid network. The transaction that is created helps to claim the same amount of BTC from bitcoin blockchain and is then sent to the user's account.

The peg out is done to transfer Bitcoin from Liquid network back to bitcoin blockchain. At the initiation of the participant the L-BTC is destroyed and then converted back to the bitcoin which is sent back to the parent blockchain. The asset that can be used are Liquid bitcoin, USDT and bitcoin


Advantages of Liquid network

• It maintain high level of decentralization since the transaction is not managed by an entity.
• since this network is managed by more than one entity, there is confidentiality involved with the use of Liquid network sidechain.
• It is very fast and efficient. Since large amount of transaction can be processed, transaction fast and efficient.
• The scalability of network is very fast and high throughput is achieved.
• It encourages immediate transfer between exchanges and wallets.

Disadvantages of Liquid Network Sidechain

• Large volume of bitcoin transfer from parent blockchain can reduce the reward of the bitcoin miners
• Liquid network sidechain is a private project by trusted bodies, hence it does not really go with bitcoin decentralized purpose.
• The network security level is not as strong as that provided by parent blockchain.


3. Describe the steps to connect the Metamask wallet and the Polygon network wallet. Show screenshots.


• To connect metamask and polygon wallet together, there are two ways to do it. One can either connect metamask wallet to polygon wallet on polygon or connect polygon wallet on metamask. But the one I will do in this task will be done on Metamask.

• I have Metamask downloaded and installed on my android phone. If you don't have, you have to download metamask on playstore, install it and create a wallet.

• Now, when you open it, it will be displayed for you as seen in the image below. Then to add polygon wallet, click the three horizontal line at the top left of the App as indicated by a red box and a red arrow in the screenshot below.

Screenshot From Metamask

• Then a menu page will appear as seen in the screenshot below. Click setting as indicated by a red box in the screenshot below

Screenshot From Metamask

• Then the Metamask setting page will appear for you. Scroll down and click Networks as indicated by a red box in the screenshot below

Screenshot From Metamask

• Then another page will appear. From there, click Add network as indicated by a red screenshot below.

Screenshot From Metamask

Then a page to add polygon details will appear. In this page I added the following details to the second image uploaded below as provided by Metamask when I searched it online.

Network Name: Polygon Mainnet
ChainID: 137
Symbol: MATIC
Block Explorer URL:

Screenshot From Metamask

• Then the polygon address was added to the Metamask as indicated in the image below by red boxes.

Screenshot From Metamask


4. According to the polygonscan block explorer, when will the block 25,000,000 be generated? Show screenshot. Explore the 12,000,000 block, at that time, what was the price of the Matic? Show screenshots.


For this task we go to the ploygonscan website by clicking polygonscan

Exploring Block 25,000,000

• To check the the time at which block 25,000,00 will be generated, will use the search bar at the top of the page on polygonscan home page by typing 25,000,000 on it as shown below.


• Then the time and date this block will be generated appeared.

• According to the image below, the block 25,000,000 will be formed in the next 125 Days, 01 Hours, 33 Mins, 53 Secs on Tue Mar 01 2022 22:01:17 GMT+0100 (West Africa Standard Time)

The current block as at the time of writing this task is 20,677,714 and the remaning block is Remaining Block: 4,322,286 as indicated by blue and yellow boxes in the screenshot respectively.


Exploring 12,000,000 block on Polygonscan

• For block 12,000,000, we search the same way we did for the block above.
• As seen in the screenshot below the block 12,000,000 was formed 227 days 9 hrs ago on (Mar-14-2021 09:35:48 AM +UTC) with this details below;
Transactions: 14 transactions and 0 contract
internal transaction in this block
Validated by:
0x7fcd58c2d53d980b247f1612fdba93e9a76193e6 in 6 secs
Block Reward: 0.00877199352 MATIC
Difficulty: 15
Total Difficulty: 99,921,518
Size: 5,826 bytes
Gas Used: 3,022,128 (15.11%)
Gas Limit: 20,000,000


The price of MATIC on that was $0.38 as indicated by a red box in the screenshot below.





Sidechains are very important part of blockchain that help to solve the issue of scalability and as such transactions speed are very fast and efficient. Side chains act as extension of the main blockchain and are dependent of the parent blockchain.

In this write up, I have been able to explain ZK rollup which is a developed form of Plasma second layer scalability used in ethereum blockchain. We also looked at liquid network, which is the sidechain of blockchain. I was also able to connect Metamask to polygon wallet and finally I explored the block 25,000,000 and 12,000,000 on the polygonscan to chech the time it will be generated and the time it was generated respectively.

Special thanks to Prof. @pelon53 for this great lecture. It added a whole lot to me.

Thank you for reading

Written by:@msquaretwins
Cc:- @pelon53

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