Alephium is the world's first operational Layer 1 sharded blockchain

Alephium addresses a slew of fundamental blockchain problems. Overall, several features of the most innovative blockchains are converged:
● Bitcoin with its security and immutability.
● Ethereum with its smart contracts.
● Solana with its throughput / scalability.

On the Bitcoin blockchain, the UTXO (Unspent Transaction Output) architecture and PoW (Proof of Work) are the main components allowing the network to remain incredibly secure as no government, no hackers, no amount of brute force can switch off, hack, duplicate, double spend, or corrupt the network.

However, when it comes to UTXO & PoW, there are two major obstacles to overcome:
1) The throughput is bottle-necked. For example, Bitcoin can only handle up to 7 Transactions Per Second (TPS).
2) Because of the willful simplicity of Bitcoin’s scripting language, smart contract development is really difficult and limited.

Along comes Ethereum with a solution. Instead of a UTXO model, ETH uses an account model. This structure opens up the world of smart contract, allowing for the addition of programming elements. While incredibly powerful, it also has its drawbacks such as being limited to 30 TPS. Therefore, when the chain experiences high network demand it experiences outstanding gas prices, which in the case of Ethereum many of its enthusiasts are well aware of by now.

Converging all these factors, what Cheng and the team behind ALPH have cracked is a very special structure. ALPH uses Bitcoin’s UTXO model, but they have made the UTXO ‘stateful’ meaning they can be programmed. They have also implemented operational sharding. Thanks to this, Alephium can manage transaction speeds of 10,000 TPS or more, which is 2500x and 650x more throughput than BTC and Ethereum respectively, while preserving the hallowed UTXO model and leveraging smart contracts.

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