Ethereum Merge is here, the Transition to Proof-of-Stake is Now Complete

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Key Takeaways

  • The merging of the Ethereum mainnet execution layer and the Beacon Chain’s consensus layer took place when the network reached a total terminal difficulty of 58750000000000000000000
  • F2Pool mined the last-ever block of PoW ETH moments before the transition.

The much-awaited Ethereum Merge has officially taken place at block 15537393 on Thursday at 06:42:42 UTC, transitioning the network from Proof-of-work to proof-of-stake.

The merging of the Ethereum main net execution layer and the Beacon Chain’s consensus layer took place when the network reached a total terminal difficulty of 58750000000000000000000, after which the next block was produced through PoS.

Vitalik Buterin took to Twitter to celebrate the ETH network’s transition to PoS. “The Merge will reduce worldwide electricity consumption by 0.2%. This is a big moment for the ETH ecosystem. Everyone who helped make the Merge happen should feel very proud today“, his tweet reads.

Crypto miner F2Pool mined the last-ever block of proof-of-work (PoW) ether (ETH) moments before the transition. The last ether block before the Merge was 15537393, and F2Pool paid around 29,991,429 gwei, as gas fees for the transaction.

“Make the commitment, and nature will respond to that commitment by removing impossible obstacles. Dream the impossible dream, and the world will not grind you under; it will lift you up. This is the trick”, f2pool wrote in the final ETH POW block.

Despite the Merge being welcomed with much-celebrated fanfare, some in the crypto community have voiced some worries. Sean Dickens, a crypto analyst at digital asset platform -Kinesis Money, says the Merge introduces new barriers.

“Firstly, stakers will be unable to withdraw their staked ETH until the Shanghai network upgrade, which is set to take place around mid-2023. Secondly, to stake ETH as a validator, you need 32 ETH ( around $49k) minimum commitment to participate,” he stated. “For the everyday crypto enthusiast, this criteria is a potential barrier blocking their involvement.”

Many PoW miners have also announced their plans to fork Ethereum within 24 hours of the Merge. PoW miners’ quest to try to continue a proof-of-work chain to retain their livelihood seems very unlikely now since most of the ETH staked on the Ethereum beacon chain cannot get the ETHW airdrop.

Lido-Ethereum’s biggest staking service said that ETHPOW would not be supported, while Binance, the world’s leading exchange, has stated that BETH holders will not receive forked tokens.

Despite the odds, ETHW, a hard fork of Ethereum supported by a group of PoW miners, enjoyed a massive rally leading up to Ethereum’s merge event early Thursday morning. 

The token surged from $35.4 to $60.68 shortly after the Merge, which was soon followed by a decline plummeting below $32 a token.

Following the Merge, the hash rate of ETC soared to 92.48TH/s, a 24h increase of 55.17%; the hash rate of RVN soared to 10.092TH/s, a 24h increase of 35.463%. CFX soared to 1.6158 TH/s, a 24h increase of 55.74%. As per Coinglass data, after the completion of the Merge, Binance ETHUSDT perpetual funding rate has dropped from -0.5% to about -0.24%.

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Saniya Raahath
Saniya Raahath

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