storm

What Are PTLCs

If the Lightning Network is so useful today, it is in great part thanks to the fact that payments can be routed inside the network: if Alice wants to pay Bob, it isn’t necessary that she has a direct channel with him. Instead, she can have a channel with Carol and, if Carol has a channel with Bob, use Carol’s channel to reach Bob. With this mechanism arises a new question: how can such payments, that rely on the benevolence of third parties such as Carol, be achieved in a trustless way?...

January 15, 2022 · 17 min · Fanis Michalakis
ropes

What Are Anchor Outputs

The last two “long” articles of this blog were dedicated to special kinds of Lightning channels that seek, each in their own way, to enhance the user experience on the Lightning Network. This week, we will dive into anchor outputs, which aim to ensure channel closings are settled quicly, even in the case of a force close. This article will go into details as to how Lightning works in this regard, what are the issues and how anchor outputs can solve them....

January 3, 2022 · 12 min · Fanis Michalakis
storm

What Are Hosted Channels

Last week’s article dealt with Turbo Channels. Today, I’ll cover Hosted Channels, another kind of channels that seek to enhance the Lightning channels UX while staying in line with the specification and mitigating the required tradeoffs. Not on-chain enforceable channels The big difference between a hosted channel and a regular Lightning channel is that the former is not enforceable on-chain, simply because there is no channel opening transaction to spend from....

December 12, 2021 · 6 min · Fanis Michalakis
attraction park

What Are Turbo Channels

Turbo channels have been around since at least 2 years now, but they remain quite largely misunderstood among the community. Information about them are available but a bit scattered. The purpose of this post is to bring them together and provide a comprehensive view on this subject. 0-conf channels Turbo channels are basically 0-confirmation channels, which means the channel can be used before the channel opening transaction get mined in a Bitcoin block....

December 4, 2021 · 7 min · Fanis Michalakis