Though blockchain itself is already a technology that defies the imagination, it has a great potential for development. A great number of researchers and developers are actively working to address the blockchain-related issues that currently exist. Speed of transaction processing is among the major issues that attracts a lot of attention.
The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO), an Australian federal science agency, has announced the results of a global test on a blockchain network that was created by the CSIRO in close cooperation with the University of Sydney. The testing process was deployed with the help of the Amazon Web Services (AWS) global cloud infrastructure.
According to the revealed results, the mentioned blockchain network can process up to 30,000 cross-border transactions per second from different geographic regions. To understand the significance of this development, it is necessary to compare the results with the capacities of Bitcoin blockchain. It can process only three to seven transactions per second and in August its average confirmation time was from 10 to 30 minutes.
This new blockchain is called Red Belly Blockchain and it was developed by the technology arm of CSIRO, Data61, and the Concurrent Systems Research Group at the University of Sydney. The network was tested on 1,000 virtual machines across 14 of AWS’ 18 geographic regions, including North America, South America, Asia Pacific (Sydney), and Europe.
Red Belly Blockchain is aimed at solving the common issue of scalability that currently exists among major blockchains. The issue is to be solved via application of an alternative consensus algorithm instead of the proof-of-work mechanism adopted by the majority of public networks including bitcoin.
Working on the development of the blockchain, the joint group has taken a decision to turn to an algorithm of another type called deterministic byzantine consensus. Such a decision is based on a desire to let the network complete transactions after receiving a threshold of messages without a necessity to wait for confirmations from nodes that are slow.
Describing Red Belly Blockchain, Dr Vincent Gramoli, senior researcher at CSIRO’s Data61 and head of Concurrent Systems Research Group at the University of Sydney stated:
“Real-world applications of blockchain have been struggling to get off the ground due to issues with energy consumption and complexities induced by the proof of work. The deployment of Red Belly Blockchain on AWS shows the unique scalability and strength of the next generation ledger technology in a global context.”
The test has been conducted exactly at the time when the CSIRO is cooperating with law firm Herbert Smith Freehills and IBM with a view to launch a new platform that will be named the Australia National Blockchain which will enable companies to conduct transactions using smart legal contracts. The key idea of the technology is to digitalize transactions on the base of pre-defined legal terms that fully comply with Australian regulations.