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IC3 Studies Blockchain Scalability Issue, Proposes 4MB Bitcoin Blocksize
Initiative For Cryptocurrencies & Contracts (IC3), an initiative of faculty members at Cornell University, Cornell Tech, and UC Berkeley, has released a position paper that says that the bitcoin block size could scale up to 4MB without affecting decentralization, CryptoCoinsNews reported.
The paper, ‘On Scaling Decentralized Blockchains’, by IC3 at the Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute, has been authored by Kyle Croman, Christian Decker, Ittay Eyal, Adem Efe Gencer, Ari Juels, Ahmed Kosba, and others.
It noted that bitcoin blockchain currently takes 10 min or longer to confirm transactions, achieving 7 transactions/sec maximum throughput, while a mainstream payment processor such as Visa credit card confirms a transaction within seconds, processing 2000 transactions/sec on average, with a peak rate of 56,000 transactions/sec.
“Clearly, a large gap exists between where Bitcoin is today, and the scalability of a mainstream payment processor”, the paper said.
Over 4,000 Bitcoin nodes were tested for conducting the study and per-node bandwidth performance was measured. The study found that 90%, of the 4565 tested bitcoin nodes, can continue to operate at 4MB blocks, corresponding to approximately 27 transactions per second.
“Given the current overlay network and today’s 10 minute average block interval, the block size should not exceed 4MB”, the paper said. “A 4MB block size corresponds to a throughput of at most 27 transactions/sec.”
In addition, the study also finds that 50% of bitcoin’s nodes (nearly 2,500 nodes), are capable of operating under a blocksize of around 40MB, corresponding to 250 transactions per second or approximately 10 million transactions a day. Also, 10% of the bitcoin network (around 450 nodes), can currently operate with 200MB blocksize, the level at which it matches to the VISA payment network.