Optimizing mining income with PoC+

Burstcoin is the pioneer of the “Proof of Capacity” (PoC) consensus algorithm, a greener alternative to Proof of Work. Launched in 2014, Burst has been at the forefront of blockchain technology with the first implementation of smart contracts. Since 2019, the Burst Apps Team has been preparing the Burst blockchain for the next decade.

On April 24th, 2021 the Signum hard fork was activated at block height 875500.

From this block on, miners are able to build up their Committed Balance on-chain using the Add Commitment transaction. However, the commitment will not be taken into account until block height 878000 (on May 1st, 2021), then miners will have a better chance of mining blocks and earning improved rewards using the new PoC+ consensus described here.

In the past, plotting more storage was the only factor that could increase Burstcoin mining income.

With PoC+ a new factor is taken into account — the Commitment.

The miner commitment is defined as the BURST amount the miner stakes in his account. This transaction locks the given amount and becomes effective after 60 confirmations (around 4 hours). After that period, the miner can unlock it by using the Remove Commitment transaction. In the case where a miner actually forges a block, his/her entire committed amount is locked for 1440 blocks (around 4 days). These constraints are in place to make the chain extremely resilient to possible attacks (see the PoC+ Robustness section below).

By using a moving average window, the blockchain itself will determine the average commitment for one TiB. This average commitment will always be a key factor for the next upcoming block.

If a miner has no BURST staked on his account for the commitment, his effective capacity will be adjusted by a factor of 1/8 — reducing the chances of mining blocks and hence reducing mining income.

If the miner has exactly the average commitment per TiB capacity, the multiplying factor is 1 and his income will be the same as before PoC+ was implemented.

If the miner stakes up to 100x more than the average commitment per TiB, then his effective capacity is multiplied by a factor of 8, and so his chance to mine blocks is 8 times higher, hence increasing mining income.

The average commitment can be requested by API calls and is also shown in most pool overview pages.

Example from https://pool.burstcoin.ro/

All miners should be aware of the average commitment per TiB because it will have a huge impact on the upcoming income calculation.

As the average commitment will not be calculated by the blockchain before May 1st, the starting value of 1000 BURST/TiB is shown. At this point, we can only guess what the average commitment will be. Current estimates vary from 100 BURST/TiB up to 500 BURST/TiB.

Current on-chain statistics as of April 27th, 2021 show that the average commitment is approximately 200 BURST per TiB.

To keep your current income as a Burstcoin miner, we are inviting all miners to stake a minimum of 200 BURST per TiB. Of course you can commit even more if you want to boost your income!

The commitment is shown on the Classic wallet, Phoenix wallet and BTDEX under “Committed Balance”.

You can Add the commitment on these wallets as follows:

Classic Wallet — Commitment View and Button to stake
Phoenix wallet — Add Commitment
Phoenix wallet — Commitment balance
BTDEX wallet with balance and add/remove buttons

PoC+ Improves Robustness Against 51% Attacks

So-called 51% attacks are a frequent concern for any distributed consensus.

With the PoC+ hybrid consensus, a malicious miner/pool would only be able to succeed in a 51% attack if they have 51% of the plotted disk space and at the same time have the average committed value in BURST available on their miner ID. For example, if a miner has 51% of the disk space (or even much more than that) it would be 8x less powerful with zero commitment. If a miner has a lot of BURST committed (staked) but low capacity, again a majority attack is impossible.

Also, if a miner has 20% of the network in disk space and 100 times the average value committed, as soon as more blocks are mined, the average commitment would increase, thereby reducing the effective capacity of such a miner.

As can be seen, PoC+ not only increases the commitment in the mining process but also makes the consensus much harder to attack. A malicious actor cannot simply divert capacity currently mining other coins, but would also need to simultaneously stake a substantial coin amount for a non-negligible period of time.

Burstcoin has a long standing history and was the first PoC coin on the planet. With the Signum hard fork, Burstcoin will once again be at the forefront of new consensus technology and will usher in a more secure and capable network for the future.

The Signum hard fork sends a strong and clear signal to the community.
We will continue evolving Burstcoin to make it the most wanted blockchain in the near future.

Important Links

BRS 3.0 download : https://github.com/burst-apps-team/burstcoin/releases/tag/v3.0.0

Telegram Group Signum: https://t.me/signumchain
POC+ Mining Calculator : https://signum.network/calculator.html

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