This Week in Blockchain Research Issue #94

Issue #94

Issue #94

Paper of the Week:

Paper Title: The Longest-Chain Protocol Under Random Delays.


  1. In the field of distributed consensus and blockchains, the synchronous communication model assumes that all messages between honest parties are delayed at most by a known constant ∆.

  2. Recent literature establishes that the longest-chain blockchain protocol is secure under the synchronous model. However, for a fixed mining rate, the security guarantees degrade with ∆.

  3. This work analyzes the performance of the longest-chain protocol under the assumption that the communication delays are random, independent, and identically distributed.

  4. This communication model allows for distributions with unbounded support and is a strict generalization of the synchronous model.

  5. The work provides safety and liveness guarantees with simple, explicit bounds on the failure probabilities. These bounds hold for infinite-horizon executions and decay exponentially with the security parameter.

  6. In particular, this work shows that the longest-chain protocol has good security guarantees when delays are sporadically large and possibly unbounded, which is reflective of real-world network conditions.

AuthorsSuryanarayana Sankagiri*, Shreyas Gandlur†, Bruce Hajek*,

Affiliations: * University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and † Princeton University.


1. Paper Title: MERCAT: Mediated, Encrypted, Reversible, SeCure Asset Transfers.

Summary: This paper proposes leveraging a hybrid design approach, by using zero-knowledge proofs, supported by restrictions enforced by trusted mediators.

Authors: Aram Jivanyan*, Jesse Lancaster*, Arash Afshar* and Parnian Alimi*,

Affiliations* Polymath.

2. Paper Title: SteemOps: Extracting and Analyzing Key Operations in Steemit Blockchain-based Social Media Platform.

Summary: This paper presents a new dataset that organizes over 900 million operations from Steemit into three sub-datasets: 1) social-network operation dataset (SOD); 2) witness-election op- eration dataset (WOD); 3) value-tansfer operation dataset (VOD).

Authors: Chao Li*, Balaji Palanisamy†, Runhua Xu‡, Jinlai Xu†, Jingzhe Wang†,

Affiliations* Beijing Jiaotong University, † University of Pittsburgh, and ‡ IBM Almaden Research Center.

3. Paper Title: Open problems in cross-chain protocols.

Summary: A number of hardly researched problems which developers encounter when building cross-chain products.

Authors: Thomas Eizinger*, Philipp Hoenisch*, and Lucas Soriano del Pino*,

Affiliations* CoBloX Pty Ltd.

4. Paper Title: Atomic Swaps between Bitcoin and Monero.

Summary: How adaptor signatures can be employed to swap between Monero and Bitcoin.

Authors: Philipp Hoenisch*, and Lucas Soriano del Pino*,

Affiliations* CoBloX Pty Ltd.


No papers.


No papers.


No papers.


1. Paper Title: FedChain: Secure Proof-of-Stake-based Framework for Federated-blockchain Systems.

Summary: A novel framework for federated-blockchain systems, to enable effective transferring of tokens between different blockchain networks.

Authors: Cong T. Nguyen*, Dinh Thai Hoang†, Diep N. Nguyen†, Yong Xiao‡, Hoang-Anh Pham*, Eryk Dutkiewicz†, and Nguyen Huynh Tuong*,

AffiliationsHo Chi Minh City University of Technology, † University of Technology Sydney, and ‡ Huazhong University of Science and Technology.


1. Paper Title: Insuring Crypto: The Birth of Digital Asset Insurance.

Summary: An overview of the digital asset industry outlining which insurers are providing digital asset insurance, how insurers are overcoming the challenges of underwriting this new insurance product, and which companies in the crypto ecosystem are obtaining coverage.

AuthorsAdam Zuckerman*

Affiliations: * University of Pennsylvania.

2. Paper Title: Riding the Wave of Crypto-Exuberance: The Potential Misusage of Corporate Blockchain Announcements.

Summary: This research, while concerned primarily with the price dynamics of companies who have partaken in blockchain and cryptocurrency development, is also concerned with the potential channels through which high-volatility cryptocurrency market dynamics can potentially influence both unwilling and unsuspecting investors and the real economy alike, presenting five key results.

AuthorsErdinc Akyildirim*†, Shaen Corbetc§, Douglas J. Cumming✜, Brian Lucey+^#, Ahmet Sensoy$

Affiliations: * University of Zurich, † ETH, Zurich, ‡ Dublin City University, § University of Waikato, ✜ Florida Atlantic University, + Trinity College Dublin, ^ University of Sydney, # University of Economics Ho Chi Minh City, and $ Bilkent University.

Conferences’ Videos:



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