Near Foundation and Polygon Labs Collaborate to Build ZK Solution

The aim of the tie-up is to allow for greater interoperability across chains.

AccessTimeIconNov 8, 2023 at 1:59 p.m. UTC
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The Near Foundation, the non-profit behind the Near Protocol, has announced a collaboration with Ethereum scaling solution firm Polygon Labs in an attempt to improve interoperability across chains.

The deal brings the Near protocol closer to one of the largest blockchain networks, Ethereum, and enables blockchains with WebAssembly (WASM) technology to use Ethereum’s liquidity, according to a press release.

The partnership aims to build zkWASM, a zero-knowledge prover for WebAssembly (WASM) blockchains. The zkWASM will maximise developer customizability, allowing users to select from a number of provers when building.

“In the future, through an in-development interoperability layer, chains will also be able to access shared liquidity in a unified ecosystem of CDK-deployed chains, including alternative layer-1s, EVM layer-2s, and WASM chains," read the press release.

The new development will be more efficient for Near validators as they no longer have to do the hard work of validating a shard, according to the press release. Instead, validators can generate a zero-knowledge proof, simplifying the process and improving scalability.

Zero-knowledge technology is a type of cryptography that has been tipped as a hot trend this year for the digital-asset industry as it eliminates the need for individuals to routinely provide personal information to various web sites or online applications.

“We are proud to collaborate with Near on this exciting research initiative to further drive the development and adoption of ZK technology,” said Sandeep Nailwal, co-founder of Polygon. The zkWASM prover maximizes developer customizability, which means projects will be able to select from a number of provers when building with Polygon Chain Development Kit (CDK), whether that’s launching or migrating an EVM chain, or building a WASM chain for closer Ethereum alignment and access to liquidity.”

The zkWASM prover is currently in active development and is expected to launch next year, according to a press release.

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Lyllah Ledesma

Lyllah Ledesma is a CoinDesk Markets reporter currently based in Europe. She holds bitcoin, ether and small amounts of other crypto assets.


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