The Ethereum Merge Has an Official Kick-Off Date

The Bellatrix upgrade, which begins the final countdown, is set to activate on Sept. 6. The Merge itself will be completed at some point Sept. 10-20.

AccessTimeIconAug 24, 2022 at 6:13 p.m. UTC
Updated Aug 25, 2022 at 1:34 p.m. UTC

Margaux Nijkerk reports on blockchain protocols with a focus on the Ethereum ecosystem. A graduate of Johns Hopkins and Emory universities, she has a masters in International Affairs & Economics. She holds a very small amount of ETH and other altcoins.

The Ethereum Foundation disclosed Wednesday the official parameters for the long-awaited Merge blockchain upgrade to a proof-of-stake consensus mechanism.

Proof-of-stake is a method of maintaining integrity in a blockchain, ensuring users of a cryptocurrency can’t mint coins they didn’t earn. It is considered to be more energy efficient than Ethereum's current proof-of-work system.

  • The Bellatrix upgrade will activate on the Beacon Chain on Sept. 6. This upgrade is responsible for setting the rest of the Merge process in motion.
  • The activation is scheduled for epoch 144896 on the Beacon Chain, which should occur at around 11:34:47 UTC.
  • After this, the Terminal Total Difficulty (TTD) value triggering the Merge will be 58,750,000,000,000,000,000,000. That TTD expected to be reached somewhere between Sept. 10 and Sept. 20. The Ethereum developers have hinted in past calls they are aiming for Sept. 15-16.
  • During this period, the difficulty level will increase to the point where, eventually, proof-of-work crypto mining will no longer be possible.
  • When TTD reaches 58,750,000,000,000,000,000,000, the network will merge its Execution layer with the new Consensus layer and transition to the new proof-of-stake consensus protocol.
  • The Merge comes after a series of dress rehearsals that tested transitions from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake on multiple test network (testnet) environments, including Ropsten, Sepolia, Goerli.
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A visualization of the timeline of upgrades around the Merge. (ethereum.org)


Update: August 24, 2022 19:07 UTC: Adds timeline graphic of updates around the Merge.

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Margaux Nijkerk reports on blockchain protocols with a focus on the Ethereum ecosystem. A graduate of Johns Hopkins and Emory universities, she has a masters in International Affairs & Economics. She holds a very small amount of ETH and other altcoins.

CoinDesk - Unknown

Margaux Nijkerk reports on blockchain protocols with a focus on the Ethereum ecosystem. A graduate of Johns Hopkins and Emory universities, she has a masters in International Affairs & Economics. She holds a very small amount of ETH and other altcoins.