‘Blobs’ to be launched via Dencun upgrade on March 13


The Dencun upgrade has now been set for launch on the Ethereum mainnet on March 13 — introducing proto-danksharding and blobs aimed at driving down transaction costs on Ethereum layer-2s.

The hard fork is scheduled to take place at 13:55:35 pm UTC, Ethereum infrastructure firm Nethermind revealed in a Feb. 8 X post. The timing equates to approximately slot 8626176 on the Ethereum network, Ethereum core developer Tim Beiko added.

The date was decided by Ethereum developers in an “AllCoreDevs” call on Feb. 8 following the successful deployment of Dencun on the Holesky testnet on Feb. 7.

Proto-danksharding is a sharding design which implements “blob-carrying transactions” to create more block space on Ethereum layer-2s.

Blob-carrying transactions are like normal transactions except that it carries an extra piece of data.

Proto-danksharding will limit the number of blobs in each block to 16, with each being no larger than 128 KB, according to Blocknative. It is expected to add about 2 MB of block space.

Both optimistic and zero-knowledge rollups will be able to leverage the extra data space to post commitments to transaction data on-chain and make the actual data available in data blobs instead of calldata.

One of Ethereum’s creators, Vitalik Buterin, has voiced that Ethereum that will “fail” without sufficient scaling infrastructure to make transactions cheap.

“Ethereum fails because each transaction costs $3.75 ($82.48 if we have another bull run), and every product aiming for the mass market inevitably forgets about the chain and adopts centralized workarounds for everything,” Buterin said last June.

A successful implementation of Dencun on the Ethereum mainnet could even lower rollup costs by up to 10 times, according to Philippe Schommers, head of infrastructure at Gnosis, who recently spoke with Cointelegraph.

Related: ETH could reach $27K this bull cycle, expert predicts

Dencun combines the Cancun and Deneb upgrades is seen as the most significant upgrade of Ethereum since the Shapella upgrade last April, which allowed the unstaking of Ether (ETH) from the Beacon Chain for the first time since the proof-of-stake chain launched on Dec. 1, 2020.

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