Cloudflare, a cybersecurity giant, is slated to activate and fully stake Ethereum validator nodes in the next months, ahead of Ethereum’s highly anticipated migration to proof-of-stake (PoS).
As part of its dedication to ecological sustainability and to help “create a better internet,” it plans to investigate the PoS network’s energy efficiency, consistency management, and network speeds.
Cloudflare was created in 2010 and offers web security services such as DDoS mitigation to protect clients from DDoS attacks.
What has Cloudflair announced?
Cloudflare unveiled its first web3 trials with the InterPlanetary File System gateway four years ago (IPFS). Then they unveiled their Ethereum Gateway three years ago. Cloudflare announced that it was testing the “next generation of Web3 networks that embrace proof of stake,” with Ethereum first in line.
At this time, “The Merge” and move to a PoS consensus method will go live in Q3 or early Q4, barring any more delays, with Cloudflare claiming that the network will see huge energy efficiency improvements.
According to a Monday blog post, the company plans to launch and fully stake Ethereum validator nodes in the next months, with each node requiring 32 Ether (ETH).
It didn’t say how many nodes there would be or when they would start.
Cloudflare asserts its commitment to research on web3
Cloudflare will contribute to the research and development of Ethereum’s fundamental infrastructure, ensuring that it remains secure, speedy, and energy-efficient for everyone.
The blog post said, “These nodes will serve as a testing ground for studies on energy efficiency, consistency management, and network speed.
Running validator nodes on the network adds geographic and infrastructure decentralization to the Ethereum ecosystem in EMEA, LATAM, and APJC. This enables the network to be secure, outage-resistant and decentralized globally.
According to the company, the experiments are part of its environmental commitment. They will help establish a route that balances the clear need to substantially lower the energy consumption of Web3 technologies with the capability to extend Web3 networks by orders of magnitude.
Ethereum’s future enhancements, according to Cloudflare, will drastically lower energy consumption as it moves away from the “difficult” proof-of-work (PoW) architecture, which has been at the vanguard of Web3 adoption but does not scale properly with the current usage rates.
What is Proof of Stake in Ethereum being referred here?
Proof of Stake is a new consensus protocol for blockchain security. Unlike Proof of Work, which relies on miners racing each other to mine a block using increasingly difficult cryptography, Proof of Stake uses self-interest to secure new transactions to the network. Validator nodes (those that validate new blocks for the chain) must post a significant asset as collateral in a smart contract to demonstrate that they will act in good faith.
For Ethereum, the equivalent is 32 ETH. Validator nodes that respect the network’s rules are rewarded, whereas validators who break them lose some of their stakes. Anyone can run a validator node as long as the stake threshold is met. This is crucial. To authenticate and testify to new transactions, Proof of Stake systems require many validator nodes. The more people in the network, the more difficult it is for malicious people to mount a 51 % attack and damage the blockchain’s security.
Moreover, a Proof of Stake validator node uses orders of magnitude less energy than a Proof of Work miner.” According to early projections from the Ethereum Foundation, the Ethereum network could consume as low as 2.6 megawatts of energy. To put it another way, after the merger, Ethereum will consume 99.5 percent less energy than it does now.
While the company did not specify which project it would work on next, it hinted that it would continue collaborating with partners in the cryptography, Web3, and infrastructure communities.