As the Ethereum blockchain edges closer to its proof-of-stake transition, the network has merged with the Beacon chain on the Kiln testnet. The news marks the final step before the blockchain deploys the upgrade and moves away from leveraging a proof-of-work consensus mechanism.
Ethereum blockchain engineer Tim Beiko revealed that the network deployed a partly successful merge on the Kiln testnet. Kiln provides a staging area for developers to perfect Ethereum’s transition to a proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchain before shipping to the public testnets and finally the mainnet.
The merge process involves integrating Ethereum’s current Execution Layer which leverages a proof-of-work (PoW) mechanism with the consensus layer leveraged by the Beacon Chain.
Although the merge proved successful as a majority of network validators produced blocks with finalized transactions, a single client in the blockchain failed to correctly validate post-merge blocks.
Issues with the Prysm programming language also resulted in contract creation errors and bad blocks during the transition to Kiln, according to tweets posted by Ethereum developer Marius Van Der Wijden. The team is reportedly addressing the issue.
Ethereum’s switch to a PoS consensus blockchain mitigates energy-intensive mining efforts and optimizes the network’s security through staked Ether (ETH) instead. This means that stakers will operate as translation validators in place of miners.
The full upgrade is expected to ship to Ethereum’s mainnet by the end of Q2 2022.