Rolling out on April 12th 2023, at 22:27:35 UTC
The renowned Ethereum blockchain is constantly working on improvements and rolling out an ambitious set of upgrades that will redesign Ethereum into a fully scaled, optimized and resilient platform.
Until today, Ethereum has deployed numerous upgrades and you can review the full list in the Ethereum roadmap.
On April 12th, 2023, at epoch 194048 (22:27:35 UTC), the Ethereum developers plan to activate the Shapella network upgrade. The upgrade will impact both the execution layer (Shanghai) and the consensus layer (Capella).
Shapella is the most important Ethereum upgrade since last year’s Merge where the Ethereum network successfully transitioned from Proof-of-Work to the Proof-of-Stake mechanism.
The move from PoW to PoS significantly impacted withdrawals as Ethereum participants were no longer able to unstake their locked ETH. The upcoming Shapella upgrade is addressing this very same issue, enabling stakers to withdraw their staked Ether and the earned rewards from the Beacon Chain.
The transition from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake required validators to lock in 32 ETH (about $52,500) to participate in staking activities. They were incentivized by the staking rewards and the opportunity to secure the Ethereum PoS network.
According to several reports, the Beacon Chain currently covers approx. 16 million ETH staked, which accounts for about $32 billion or almost 15% of the Ether’s circulating supply.
Once Shappela goes live, validators will first have access to partial withdrawals, where they will be able to withdraw earned rewards and still continue participating in network activities. Next will be full withdrawals, which will only be accessible via an exit. Validators will get the chance to withdraw the entire stake of 32 ETH, plus their earned rewards and enter an exit queue.
As stated in Withdrawal FAQ, users will face limitations in unstaking or exiting all at the same time. A queue will be implemented, and only a limited number of validators will be allowed to withdraw per day.
In addition to allowing validators to retrieve their staked ETH, the upgrade introduces new features to the execution and consensus layer, and incorporates a number of Ethereum Improvement Proposals (EIPs), including EIP-3651, EIP-3855, EIP-3860, EIP-4895, and EIP-6049. These EIPs define potential new features and processes for the Ethereum network.
Node operators who will not update their Ethereum client to the latest version will be stuck on an incompatible chain following the old rules and will be unable to send Ether or operate on the post-Shapella Ethereum network.
Stakers who will not update their Ethereum client to the latest version will be stuck on an incompatible chain following the old rules and will be unable to send Ether or operate on the post-Shapella Ethereum network.
The Ethereum developers are already focusing on their next steps, which will include the implementation of additional upgrades:
If you want to watch the Shapella upgrade go live, join EthStaker and Ethereum Cat Herders’ Shapella viewing party that starts just before the upgrade goes live.
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