ZeroSync and Blockstream to Broadcast Bitcoin Zero-Knowledge Proofs From Space

The partners say using zero-knowledge proofs will allow Bitcoin nodes to sync quickly from anywhere on earth, “even without Internet.”

AccessTimeIconMar 31, 2023 at 10:39 p.m. UTC
Updated Apr 3, 2023 at 4:51 p.m. UTC

Swiss non-profit ZeroSync Association and Bitcoin infrastructure firm Blockstream say they plan to broadcast Bitcoin zero-knowledge proofs – a type of cryptography that’s become one of 2023's hottest blockchain-tech trends – from Blockstream’s satellite.

Using zk-proofs to validate the Bitcoin blockchain means nodes don’t have to download the chain’s current 500GB of data and can therefore sync in fractions of a second instead of hours or days.

Blockstream’s satellite network provides free global access to Bitcoin by broadcasting the blockchain to the entire planet, including areas with unreliable Internet coverage. ZeroSync expects the first experimental broadcast to take place by the end of the year.

The newly formed ZeroSync Association was launched on Tuesday and plans to help scale Bitcoin by using zero-knowledge proofs (zk-proofs), a cryptographic technique to prove the validity of information without revealing the information itself.

“The security of Bitcoin requires every participant to verify every transaction,” ZeroSync co-founder Robin Linus told CoinDesk. “That didn't scale well until now. Proof systems like STARKs have been invented. Applying them to generate a proof of Bitcoin's chain state, and broadcasting it via satellite, can bring Bitcoin to almost everyone in the world. Don't trust, verify.”

Edited by Bradley Keoun.


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Frederick  Munawa

Frederick Munawa was a Technology Reporter for Coindesk. He covered blockchain protocols with a specific focus on bitcoin and bitcoin-adjacent networks.