The Lightning Network method, considered to be the best solution for scaling Bitcoin, provides a way to perform most Bitcoin transactions outside the Bitcoin blockchain. This would significantly reduce the load on the network.
However, since there are only a few tests available for this relatively new method so far, a lot has to be done here. Not least for this reason, the tests of the French start-up Acinq provided a big load.
During the tests, the company was inspired by the whitepaper published in July by the blockchain startup Bitfury. Shortly thereafter, the company launched 2,500 Amazon Web Service Nodes this month to test the routing of „Lightning-Style Payments“. On September 18th, the routing practice described in theory was finally abandoned.
The test proved that Lightning-Nodes Bitcoin payments can efficiently red. This is an important milestone for Bitcoin, according to Bitfurt CEO Valery Vavilov.
A lesser known startup has tested an important piece of Bitcoin formula
„This test is an important light at the end of the tunnel. It has shown, with some adaptation by the Acinq team, that our solution for processing Bitcoin payments via a Lightning network not only exists in theory, but can also be successfully implemented in Bitcoin formula“.
Now even the last critics who have claimed that a Lightning network is too difficult to implement so far should have been soothed. The test has shown that the idea, which has only been caught in theory so far, can be put into practice.
„We thought it might be interesting to go beyond simulation. The test has shown us that we are getting closer and closer to the goal and implementation,“ said Pierre-Marie Padiou, CEO of Acinq.
Since integration requires privacy, it could also make an important contribution to the anonymity of payments. Even if the implementation via a Lightning network requires further integration instances, as this is the only way to keep the transactions „off-chain“.
Since the release of the Lightning network by programmers Joseph Pool and Thaddeus Dryja in February 2015, several startups (Lightning, Blockstream, Blockchain) have been working on the open source project and an integration of the concept.
So when can the first Bitcoins be sent by Bitcoin trader over the fast and scalable network?
The answer could not be „in the near future“ as this was only the first of two steps towards a lightning Bitcoin trader network where Bitcoin transactions can be processed by the Bitcoin trader.
„Dynamic route ranking will be the next big challenge,“ says Padiou. He says the last test was only a part of the whole that includes static routing. The second step will be dynamic routing.
Building a static network with one channel is one thing, building channels that can potentially change every second and with every payment is another thing.
„This is difficult to solve because it moves non-stop. You can’t be sure which channel is the right one to choose for the payment route. Occasionally, a longer route may be the better route, as this is the cheapest route. It changes every second“.
Other important and clarifiable components of the lighting network will be the encrypted communications between the nodes or the storage of channel statistics. Padiou himself will initially focus on routing.