Layer-0: Infrastructure For Customised Blockchains

Layer-0 protocols are the infrastructure that customised Layer-1 blockchains can be built on. We explore notable projects like Cosmos, Polkadot, Avalanche, LayerZero, and zkLink.

Jul 03, 2023
June 2023 Layer 0

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Key Takeaways

  • Layer-0 protocols form the foundation that Layer-1 blockchains are constructed on. Serving as infrastructure for blockchain networks and applications, Layer-0 protocols represent one solution striving to tackle issues confronting the industry, including scalability and enabling interoperability between blockchains.
  • Layer-0 protocols enable developers to launch customised Layer-1 blockchains designed for specific applications or use cases. With the support of Layer-0s, developers can focus on applications instead of consensus and security.
Layer Descriptions L0 L1 L2
  • Layer-0 protocols aim to allow the Layer-1 blockchains built on them to communicate and interoperate, which provides users with a seamless experience across multiple networks. Without interoperability solutions provided by Layer-0 networks, individual blockchains would largely operate in isolation. This limits their utility and hinders the networking effects that arise when systems can communicate and interact with each other.
  • A number of notable Layer-0 protocols adopt the relay-sidechain based infrastructure. This mainly constitutes three components: A mainchain supports the data transfer between Layer-1s; the sidechains are application-specific Layer-1s connected to the mainchain; and the interchain communication protocol acts as a standard for data exchange among the Layer-1s.
Sidechain/Relay Based Layer-0 Components
Prominent Layer-0 Networks
  • In the coming years, Layer-0 protocols have the potential to usher in a new wave of blockchain innovation by enabling the growth of multiple specialised Layer-1 blockchains that interoperate seamlessly. Several technical and adoption challenges still remain, but Layer-0 could lay the foundation for a more open, productive, and composable blockchain ecosystem.

Read the full report: Layer-0: Infrastructure For Customised Blockchains

Authors Research and Insights team

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