Buterin Vitalik, founder Ethereum, at a recent session of questions and answers OmiseGO AMA said that the decision of the second level such as Sharding and Plasma would allow the network to handle 1 million transactions per second, and potentially even more than 100 million transactions per second.
Earlier at various conferences and presentations Buterin emphasized that Ethereum and, in General, all decentralized network on the blockchain are struggling with the problem of scalability. It is associated with the original developers limit the size of one block in the chain (1 MB). This, in turn, significantly reduces the number of transactions that can be placed in the unit.
In September 2017, during an interview with entrepreneur and venture investor Newelem Ravikant at the conference Disrupt SF 2017 Buterin noted that bitcoin and Ethereum are treated from three to six transactions per second at maximum capacity. So the blockchain could support a major payment network like Visa, or the stock markets such as Nasdaq and the Internet of Things (IoT), he will have to handle hundreds of thousands transactions per second.
“Bitcoin now handles less than three transactions per second, and if this number is approaching four, it is already at its peak capacity. The Ethereum makes five transactions per second, and if it is approaching six, he, too, is at peak capacity. At the same time, Uber does an average of 12 orders per second, several hundreds of PayPal, Visa, several thousand, major stock exchange tens of thousands, and IoT hundreds of thousands,” said Buterin.
However, all is not hopeless. There are tools that allow you to increase the number of transactions on the blockchain. During a session of questions and answers OmiseGO AMA Creator of Ethereum explained that the decision of the second level can optimize the blockchain and allow the network to support a large decentralized applications with millions of users.
One such solution is called Sharding. The essence of this technique of scaling is to split blockchain into separate parts (shards), which are then transmitted to group of nodes for information processing. Set the sharding function frees all the nodes of the network from the need to work with each individual piece of data in the chain, optimizing information processing.
Another solution called Plasma has developed itself Buterin and main developer Lightning Network Joseph POON. It works on the principle of the bitcoin Protocol for Lightning Network that allows Ethereum to handle micropayments by creating a child blockchain-networks within the main chain. This makes processing of information faster and also improves security and makes the network invulnerable to potential attacks.
“The reason I think that the decisions of the first and second level are mutually reinforcing, is that if you look at the math, you’ll see that the increase in scalability from the first solution and the second multiplied with each other. If you have a Sharding solution, it itself can increase the scalability of Ethereum 100 times or, ultimately, even more… But when you add on top of this Plasma, this means you will improve 100 times already superior network,” explained Buterin.
According to Vitalik, the synergy between the solutions of the first and second levels, increasing the scalability of Ethereum 10 thousand times, will enable the network to process millions of transactions per second and maintain most applications.