Roberto Salcines

» What Are Blockchain Bridges, And Why Are They Important For Defi?

Like any physical bridge, a blockchain bridge acts as the missing link between two blockchain ecosystems, making the transfer of information, data and tokens across them fairly easy. A blockchain bridge is a tool that enables a user to transfer their digital assets (e.g., cryptocurrency) from one blockchain to another. For example, if a user wants to transfer Solana currency to Ethereum, the blockchain bridge “wraps” the token information detailing the transaction and blockchain details. Ethereum uses that information to create new transaction information in their blockchain.

  • Moreover, the Binance bridge uses aspects of its Ethereum-compatible smart contract chain, BNB Smart Chain , to wrap token assets.
  • CBridge — an L2 solution that uses smart contracts for cross-chain transactions.
  • A blockchain bridge, otherwise known as a cross-chain bridge, connects two blockchains and allows users to send cryptocurrency from one chain to the other.
  • It is very likely that new concepts will emerge in the future as well as existing ones to get improved.
  • Finally, we look at some of the popular blockchain bridge projects in operation across the industry.
  • strives to keep its information accurate and up to date.
  • Dive deeper into the domain of web3 and find out the significance of a blockchain bridge for the future now.

RenBTC is an Ethereum token that allows you to hold a token that is pegged to bitcoin’s price, but gives you the capability to do things like lend it and interact with other decentralized Apps. Let’s go over a very simple example as to why you would want to use a blockchain bridge. AAVE is a very popular lending and borrowing platform that allows you to lend out your cryptocurrency in turn for earning interest on it. If I lend out Ethereum on the Ethereum network, I can earn .50% right now. However, if I lend out Ethereum on the Polygon network, I can earn 3%.

Binance Is Working With Law Enforcement To Find An Attacker Who Stole $570m Worth Of Funds From The Binance Smart Chain

Blockchain promises the value of decentralization and freedom from the control of any individual or institution. For a fluid blockchain future, interoperability is not only important – it’s a necessity. Being able to work and move assets across networks will be a driving force in the digital world, from cryptocurrency networks to Metaverse platforms. Darwinia is building a permissionless non-custodial bridge protocol featuring efficient, low cost, decentralization of cross-chain tokens and non-fungible token transfers, as well as other cross-chain operations. Darwinia has already launched its bridge to Ethereum and aims to implement more bridges in the future connecting significant heterogeneous blockchains such as BSC, Tron, Filecoin, etc.

The definition of a blockchain bridge

RenBridge freezes your original DOGE so you can’t double-spend your crypto on two different chains. The end result is generally the same with each bridge type, but it’s important to know the difference between each bridge type before using one. Normally, these islands are isolated from one another and can’t exchange information. In other words, you can’t take your ETH tokens and use them on Solana island, or vice versa. There are thousands of financial products and services out there, and we believe in helping you understand which is best for you, how it works, and will it actually help you achieve your financial goals. We’re proud of our content and guidance, and the information we provide is objective, independent, and free.

Porting assets from one blockchain to another blockchain comes with a myriad of benefits. First, the blockchain onto which you port assets might be cheaper and faster than its native blockchain. This is certainly true for Ethereum, where high transaction fees and slow throughput make it difficult for newcomers to get involved in decentralized finance .

Different Types Of Blockchain Bridges

In the past years, she came up with many clever ideas that brought scalability, anonymity and more features to the open blockchains. She has a keen interest in topics like Blockchain, NFTs, Defis, etc., and is currently working with 101 Blockchains as a content writer and customer relationship specialist. Writer and researcher of blockchain technology and all its use cases. If you want to use Bitcoin on Ethereum’s blockchain, for example, Wrapped Bitcoin is the way to do it. Your BTC would get locked up at the bridge and the same amount of Wrapped Bitcoin would be minted on Ethereum’s network . We see interoperability at play when two networks can interact with each other seamlessly and transfer data and value, even if they’re not the same network.

For example, the bridge from Binance is a bidirectional blockchain bridge connecting the main Binance chain to the leading smart contract chain, Ethereum. Moreover, the Binance bridge uses aspects of its Ethereum-compatible smart contract chain, BNB Smart Chain , to wrap token assets. Furthermore, the Binance bridge allows users to transfer assets from the Binance ecosystem to the Ethereum ecosystem. Plus, the bridge allows users to use Ethereum assets on BSC using the BEP-20 token standard. Primarily, a bridge enables the transfer of assets or information cross-chain or cross-network.

The bridges provide seamless transactions between popular blockchain networks. In addition, every bridge has a different approach to operations based on its time. Therefore, you are more likely to identify profound variations in the transfer times for every bridge. In order to achieve decentralization — which is the key objective of blockchain technology — blockchain networks cannot function in silos. By only allowing users within a specific network to access its full suite of services, a centralized financial system is created which is now centered around that blockchain.

Considering that different blockchains have advantages over others, like security or speed, having more interoperability is good for crypto. So, if you want to move your Chainlink to Polygon’s network to stake it or spend it, you can by using a blockchain bridge. Such an obvious problem forced the community to work on solutions, and these solutions appeared quickly. In this article, you will learn how blockchain bridges work, which of them are the most popular at the moment, and what problems they solve. From the very beginning, one of the most significant problems of blockchain ecosystems was their mutual incompatibility.

What Are The Biggest Blockchain Bridges?

Liquidity networks shine with speed and security because they are locally verified systems (i.e. do not require global consensus). They are also more capital efficient than bonded/insured external validators because capital efficiency is tied to transaction flow/volume rather than security. For example, given somewhat equal flows between two chains and a built-in rebalancing mechanism, liquidity networks could facilitate an arbitrarily large amount of economic throughput. The trade-off is with statefulness because while they can pass around calldata, they are limited in functionality.

The definition of a blockchain bridge

At the heart of it, a wrapped coin is basically a token that represents one network but lives on another . In the aftermath of the exploit, Sam Sun, a researcher at Paradigm, said on Twitter that the attacker “somehow convinced the Binance Bridge” to send them 1 million BNB two times. To stay updated on key developments in the DeFi space, follow the MakerDAO blog. GoCryptoBlogs is the foremost cryptocurrency news magazine that covers many aspects of the cryptocurrency phenomena from around the globe. But we do have to make money to pay our team and keep this website running! has an advertising relationship with some or all of the offers included on this page, which may impact how, where, and in what order products and services may appear.

Blockchain bridges provide important interoperability for different chains. But crypto is still an emerging space, and there have been cases of bridge hacks in the past. In this sense, centralized bridges are similar to cryptocurrency exchanges like Coinbase and Binance. You essentially deposit your cryptocurrency, request a token equivalent of a crypto on another chain, pay some fees, and you’re off to the races. RenBridge is decentralized, and all of this minting and burning happens by using smart contracts. In fact, there are many popular networks, like the Binance Smart Chain or Ethereum network, that these different coins are built on.

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Blockchain Bridges: Building Networks Of Cryptonetworks

This type of bridge seems to be the most advanced as it avoids the problem of creating wrapped tokens which leads to fragmented liquidity. Furthermore, it prevents the trouble of finding native assets on all chains to support. However, What is a Blockchain Bridge And How it Works for this model to work, the bridge has to ensure that there’s adequate liquidity on all chains for their token, paired with the chain’s native currency. First, the bridge issues its own token on all supported blockchains.

The definition of a blockchain bridge

Having access to multiple blockchains through the same network greatly enhances the crypto experience for most of us. You may have seen already many types of digital assets having the prefix w-, such as wBTC, wETH, etc. These types of assets are the representation of bridged assets on a chain other than their native chain. For instance, a bridged BTC on the Ethereum network carried the ticker wBTC, a bridged ETH on the Avalanche network carries the ticker wETH and so on. Sometimes bridges might use other prefixes or suffixes to represent the bridged asset.

Decentralized Blockchain Bridges

Errors in the smart contract of blockchain bridge expose users to the risk that the bridge is hacked and funds are stolen. Recently, the popular blockchain game axie infinity, which uses ronin bridge, was hacked, resulting in the theft of $600 million. Modern blockchain technology has some limitations, especially when Web3 space is developing so rapidly. What follows is the need to provide users with more choices and increase scalability for blockchain developers. This is why blockchain bridges play an important role in the blockchain technology. On top of it, the community of blockchain developers believes that the best design for a blockchain bridge has not been created yet.

Overall, a blockchain bridge is a gateway for users to explore new blockchain ecosystems. Also, a bridge application could be a development landscape for further innovation around communication between two networks. In addition, many blockchains employ pieces of code to allow other developers to deploy tokens, smart contracts, and applications on top of a network. Further, each blockchain network has its own token standard and framework for development. As more projects emerge, DeFi users are keen to use assets from one network with another application on a different chain.

The Avalanche team introduced an update for the bridge in June 2022 and included support for transferring assets between Bitcoin blockchain and Avalanche network. The blockchain bridge by Binance serves as a bidirectional bridge between Ethereum and the main Binance chain. It also utilizes specific features of the Ethereum-compatible BNB Smart Chain for wrapping token assets. Therefore, it can help in transferring assets to Ethereum from Binance. The Binance Bridge helps users utilize Ethereum-based assets on the BNB Smart Chain by wrapping tokens in the BEP-20 token standard. Interestingly, an overview of the different variants of a blockchain bridge could shed further light on their work.

Sidechain Bridges

When you have bitcoin and want to transfer some of it to Ethereum, the blockchain bridge will hold your coin and create equivalents in ETH for you to use. Rather, the amount of BTC you want to transfer gets locked in a smart contract while you gain access to an equal amount of ETH. When you want to convert back to BTC, the ETH you had or whatever’s left of it will get burned and an equal amount of BTC goes back to your wallet. In order to avoid the creation of new tokens on the destination chain, some bridges take a slightly different approach. First, they use a similar mechanism to the one used by decentralized exchanges, to incentivize users to deposit their funds in the bridge’s protocol, on all chains the bridge supports. As blockchain technology gains wider adoption, more people are coming up with new innovative ideas to solve existing problems and help transition to Web 3.0 – the decentralized web.

Want To Unlock Your Career In Blockchain?

Blockchain technology, especially bridging, is still at an early stage of development, so of course there will be some concerns. The following are the concerns exposed when using blockchain bridging. Users can enter the new platform and enjoy the benefits of different blockchains. The cooperation between different blockchains allows its users to have more choices. It’s a huge deal in the world of decentralized finance because it introduces connections between previously isolated networks.

Only through bridging can blockchain networks interact and advance together toward a decentralized future with a shared pool of users. Conversely, a bidirectional blockchain bridge allows users to seamlessly transfer data and assets to and from network A and network B. Ergo, bidirectional bridges are often more favorable than using two separate unidirectional bridges when making frequent transactions. Blockchain bridges can be trusted, trustless, unidirectional, or bidirectional . Blockchain bridges can also facilitate the transfer of various data sets and transactions. For example, this includes decentralized identities, smart contract calls, and off-chain information (i.e., market price or game score feeds).

Is “narrowing down” the identity of the attacker who stole $570 million worth of crypto from a cross-chain bridge on October 6, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao told CNBC on Monday. Memorably, the Poly Network bridge had about $611 million worth of cryptocurrency stolen last August, before the attacker gave the funds back a few days later. In all of these attacks, hackers exploited software vulnerabilities to drain funds, but the Ronin Bridge attack had a different weak point. One of the biggest problems of blockchain was the inability to work together. While fluid and somewhat efficient as single entities, each blockchain is limited by the walls of its own domain. As a bridge user, ensure that you always disconnect from bridges after you use them and ensure that you denounce any rights that you may give to the protocol.

What Is A Blockchain Bridge And How Does It Work?

It can be a bit confusing to research blockchain bridges since there are lots of centralized and decentralized options out there. This is where blockchain bridges become incredibly useful and help provide cross-chain interoperability. Allbridge — a bridge between EVM compatible blockchains (e.g., Solana, Terra), as well as L2 blockchains. Allbridge supports native token transfers as well as the mint-and-burn method, which allows transferring millions of dollars at a time. Wrap Protocol — acts as a decentralized bridge between the Ethereum and Tezos blockchains, allowing anyone to wrap ERC20 tokens in the FA2 standard.

If a bridge is custodial, this means that only one centralized entity controls the asset. Bitcoins in all packages are held by BitGo, a centralized digital asset trust. The following discussion offers a detailed introduction to a blockchain bridge and its working alongside the value advantages it presents for the blockchain community. In addition, you can also learn about the risks of a blockchain bridge and examples of projects. Once your WTBC is on the Ethereum network, you can use it as you would any other of Ethereum’s tokens. This is because WBTC is essentially an ERC20 token and operates seamlessly with Ethereum’s ecosystem.

You use a decentralized blockchain bridge like RenBridge to send your DOGE to the Ethereum network. Depending on the implementation and purpose, there are several main types of blockchain bridges. A blockchain network comprises a global community of computers collaboratively managing, validating, and storing financial and data transactions.

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