Introduction to ZK-Chain

ZK-Chain
3 min readApr 26, 2023

ZK-Chain is a decentralized Binance Chain Layer 2 scalability solution that uses cryptographic zero-knowledge proofs to offer validity and quick finality to off-chain transaction computation, also known as a ZK-Rollup.

The ZK-Rollup executes smart contracts transparently, by publishing zero-knowledge validity proofs, while maintaining opcode compatibility with the Ethereum Virtual Machine. This documentation presents detailed guides on:

  • ZK Chain and its Architecture
  • Our design approach to State Machines
  • Running a local zkNode
  • Participating in the ZK Chain Testnet and build on the Mainnet

The documentation cascades into the finer details of ZK Chain’s sub-components, including the zero-knowledge Prover (zkProver), the State Machines used in the zkProver, the ZK-Chain Bridge smart contract, and the special toolings that enable the ZK-Chain to achieve its objectives.

Scaling Binance Chain with ZK-Chain

Given that Binance Chain is subject to the DLT (distributed ledger technology) trilemma, it cannot scale beyond its transaction threshold without sacrificing decentralization or security. This is where ZK-Chain comes into play.

Henceforth ZK-Chain, is a virtual machine designed and developed to emulate the Ethereum Chain Virtual Machine (EVM) by recreating all existing EVM opcodes for the transparent deployment of existing Binance Chain smart contracts. We have developed Zero-knowledge Rollups (ZK-Rollups) which run on top of the Binance Chain Mainnet and exponentially improve the scalability and transactions per second (TPS) of Binance Chain.

In order to prove that the off-chain computations are correct, ZK-Chain employs verifiable zero-knowledge proofs as validity proofs. Although the Layer 2 zero-knowledge proofs are based on complex polynomial computations to provide validation and finality to off-chain transactions, the validity proofs are quick and easy to verify.

As a state machine, ZK-Chain carries out state changes, which come from executions of Binance Chain’s Layer 2 transactions that users send to the network, and subsequently produces validity proofs attesting to the correctness of the state change computations carried out off-chain.

Although taking on this revolutionary design approach was a hard decision to make, the objective is to minimize the user and developer friction while using the solution. It is an approach that requires the recreation of all EVM opcodes for the transparent deployment of existing Binance Chain smart contracts. For this purpose, a new set of technologies and tools has been created and engineered by the team which we’ll discuss in later sections of this documentation.

Benefits of ZK-Chain

  • EVM-equivalence
  • Binance Chain security
  • ZKP-powered scalability

ZK-Chain is a Layer 2 scaling solution for Binance Chain that leverages the scaling power of zero-knowledge proofs while maintaining Binance Chain compatibility. Developers and users on ZK-Chain can use the same code, tooling, apps, etc that they use on Binance Chain, but with much higher throughput and lower fees.

Developers will deploy their existing contracts to the ZK-Chain, and users can deposit assets from Binance Chain and transact off-chain. These transactions are grouped into batches with zero-knowledge proof attesting to the validity of each transaction. This ensures that the operators of the ZK-Chain can’t steal user funds, so we can say that it inherits the security of the Binance Chain.

ZK-Chain offers compatibility and scalability without compromise.

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