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Cardano: Vasil hard fork coming on the 22nd of September

FI
Filippo Iachello

4 min

Cardano: Vasil update arrives on the 22nd of September

The Cardano Foundation developers have announced the date for the hard fork: the Vasil update arrives on the 22nd of September 2022!

For major crypto projects, this September 2022 is the month to look to the future and get up to speed. The event on everyone’s mind is definitely Ethereum’s The Merge. However, Cardano and its crypto ADA (developed by one of Ethereum’s own founders, Charles Hoskinson) are ready to begin the Vasil update. The main goal of the update, or hard fork, is to increase the speed and scalability of Cardano‘s blockchain and make it generally more powerful and cheaper. These improvements are aimed at facilitating the development of decentralised applications (DApps), especially in the area of Decentralised Finance (DeFi), and increasing the possibilities of use cases for ADA. Let’s discover what is new with the Vasil update, coming at the end of September!

Cardano’s Vasil update arrives on the 22nd of September 2022

After some problems on the testnet that were solved efficiently and quickly by the Cardano team, the date for the hard fork of the ADA crypto blockchain has finally been announced. The Vasil update will take place on the 22nd of September 2022. Cardano is a blockchain created in 2015 and based on the Proof-of-Stake consensus mechanism. This allows it to be highly scalable, meaning it can handle a large number of transactions per second. On the other hand, a hard fork is an update of a protocol in which very radical changes are implemented to the point of making it incompatible with previous versions.

But where does the Vasil update coming on the 22nd of September 2022 fit on Cardano’s roadmap? The Cardano roadmap is divided into five macro-phases, each of which has a main objective. At the moment, we are in the phase called Basho which wants to improve the scalability of the network as its primary objective. In other words, increasing the number of users who use it every day without worsening performance or making it more expensive. The Vasil hard fork will happen automatically: users with ADA crypto or using DeFi DApps on Cardano’s blockchain should not even notice it. Vasil will in fact be implemented using Cardano’s hard-fork combinator (HFC), an innovative technology that enables protocol transitions and updates without interrupting the smooth operation of the network.

Why is the update named as such? The name Vasil was chosen to pay homage to Vasil St. Dabov a Bulgarian developer who was the Chief Blockchain Advisor of a software research and development company named Quanterall before his passing in December 2021. Vasil St. Dabov was a very active member of the crypto community and an ambassador for Cardano. The date of the update is also symbolic, as the 22nd September coincides with the day on which Bulgaria, St. Dabov’s birthplace, celebrates its independence from the Ottoman Empire.

What changes will be implemented for Cardano users and developers?

Vasil will provide some key functionalities to enable the launch of further projects on Cardano. At the same time, it will offer an upgrade path (with increased speed, transactional capability and more powerful scripts) to existing DApps. Specifically, Vasil will modify the transaction validation and transmission system with a mechanism called Diffusion Pipelineing. With this mechanism, blocks will be added to the network when they are created and not only when they are complete. This optimises the timing of block validation and enables Cardano’s blockchain to not only guarantee faster transactions, but also to increase its security by making possible attacks much more complex.

However, the update was also designed with the developers in mind, i.e. those involved in creating decentralised applications on the network.

With Vasil, the programming language with which smart contracts are written on Cardano’s blockchain called Plutus will also be updated. The hard fork will give rise to Plutus V2, which will enable developers to develop more efficient and cost-effective DApps (from a transaction perspective).

To date, Cardano ranks 29th among all the blockchains in terms of volumes traded on its platforms, of which there are currently only twelve. The current total blockchain value (TVL) is around $80 million. We will see if the Vasil update, due on 22 September 2022 will help Cardano’s network make its way into the big world of DeFi and increase the use cases of crypto ADA.

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