Layer 1 Blockchain refers to the basic blockchain architecture, upon which developers build additional solutions and layers. A Layer 1 blockchain is a network like Ethereum, on which various apps are built.
What Is a Layer 1 Blockchain?
A Layer 1 blockchain is the foundation layer of every blockchain network. Simply defined, it’s a network that serves as a foundation for other protocols, programs, and networks to be built upon. Layer 1 is in charge of programming languages and conscious processes, as well as the rules and settings that allow a blockchain network to run properly. The most well-known Layer 1 blockchains are Ethereum, Bitcoin, and Litecoin.
Even though all Layer 1 blockchains share some commonalities, they differ in a variety of ways, including:
- Block validation (PoW, PoS, or PoA)
- Number of blockchains in their ecosystem
- Interoperability with other networks
While a Layer 1 blockchain can be modified, it is significantly easier to develop a Layer 2 solution on top of it. This will have no effect on the first layer. However, it will provide customers with advantages such as faster transactions and extra capabilities.
Blockchain Scalability Explained
Understanding Layer 1 blockchains require understanding how blockchain scaling works. To ensure the security and operation of a blockchain, thousands of nodes execute transactions around the clock. Massive quantities of data must be stored and shared among all nodes in order to handle such a large number of transactions.
Blockchain networks must be highly scalable in order to compete with traditional payment processing methods. The Bitcoin and Ethereum networks, for example, can handle between 5 and 30 transactions per second (TPS). Visa, on the other hand, has a VisaNet electronic payment network that can process an astonishing 24,000 TPS. Multiple approaches are being developed by developers to improve the scalability of these blockchain networks.
Benefits of Layer One Blockchain Solutions
The most obvious benefit of layer 1 blockchain technology is undoubtedly scalability. Layer one blockchain solutions necessitate changes to the basic protocol in order to achieve scalability. As a result, layer one blockchain solutions essentially assist you in upholding the core value propositions of blockchain technology. A layer 1 blockchain protocol provides high throughput while also being economically viable for decentralization and security.
Another significant feature of layer one blockchain technologies is the potential for improved ecosystem growth. Layer 1 scaling solutions could aid in the incorporation of new tools, technological advancements, and other elements into base protocols. As a result, layer 1 scaling solutions can provide an important basis for innovation in the larger blockchain ecosystem.
The next significant value advantage of entries in a layer 1 blockchain list is the choice of the right blockchain. You can find layer 1 blockchain solutions to boost scalability depending on the scope of your blockchain-based project and the desired use cases.
Layer 1 Blockchain Limitations
The most significant barrier preventing blockchains from competing effectively with popular legacy services is a lack of scalability. The widespread adoption of blockchain networks such as Bitcoin and Ethereum is simply not viable without fast transactions.
The Scalability Trilemma is a term coined by Vitalik Buterin, a Russian-Canadian programmer and one of the co-founders of Ethereum, to characterize the necessary compromise required to upgrade the existing blockchain architecture. Three properties must be balanced:
As Vitalik has indicated, there must be a trade-off between the three aforementioned features in order to improve a blockchain. Bitcoin’s creators, for example, chose to prioritize security and decentralization over scalability.
Types of Layer One Blockchain Solutions
A layer 1 blockchain protocol must, at a minimum, provide decentralization, security, and scalability. Through various ways, layer one blockchain networks can ensure greater scalability results. Here are two sorts of layer 1 blockchain examples based on the scalability methodologies they use.
The first category of layer 1 blockchain solutions would undoubtedly include references to switching consensus mechanisms. Many traditional blockchain networks rely on Proof of Work, a resource-intensive and slow consensus process. While Proof of Work promotes decentralized consensus and security via cryptography, it has significant drawbacks in terms of scalability.
On the contrary, a layer 1 blockchain system might use Proof of Stake as the consensus mechanism. Proof of Stake facilitates decentralized consensus on a blockchain network, as well as stake-based authentication of block transactions. Proof of Stake, on the other hand, sacrifices security in exchange for faster transaction speeds. As a result, new layer 1 blockchain enhancements are required to address scalability challenges while still ensuring security.
Another prominent aspect among items in a layer 1 blockchain list would be the possibility of sharding. It is a useful strategy, typically used in database partitioning, that can be used to distributed ledger technology in the blockchain. Sharding is a dependable layer 1 scaling approach for enhancing transaction throughput. Sharding is still an experimental concept in the blockchain world as of now.
It entails dividing a network into a collection of various individual database pieces, often known as shards. The split of the network and its nodes aids in the effective allocation of workload while also allowing for faster transaction rates. Every shard in a layer 1 blockchain would be in charge of managing the subset in the overall activity of the network. Therefore, every shard has its own transactions, separate blocks, and nodes.
In the case of sharding in layer 1 blockchain examples, each node is not required to keep a complete copy of the entire blockchain. On the contrary, nodes report completed work accounts to the main chain and broadcast the current condition of local data, such as address balances and other metrics.
Conclusion on Layer 1 Blockchain
There are various layer-1 networks and layer-2 protocols in today’s blockchain environment. It’s easy to become confused, but if you understand the fundamental concepts, understanding the general structure and design becomes much easier. This information might be beneficial when researching new blockchain initiatives, particularly those focusing on network compatibility and cross-chain solutions.