Exploring the Basics of zkSync Era with Bella Protocol

Bella Protocol
4 min readJul 7, 2023

The Ethereum network, while powerful and widely used, frequently faces congestion. Slow transactions and increased gas prices have been persistent issues, necessitating an improved solution. While increasing the entire network’s power is possible, this isn’t the most elegant solution. A solution that can accomplish a high transaction rate without compromising security. Layer 2 solutions serve this exact purpose. They are designed as extensions to Ethereum and offer an array of strategies to address the inherent network congestion issues. Among these solutions, rollups have shown significant promise in increasing Ethereum’s scalability.

Understanding Rollups

Rollups are an innovative development designed to bolster Ethereum’s scalability. They perform calculations off-chain, accumulate multiple transactions into a single batch, and submit it to the main Ethereum chain in one action. It allows for massive amounts of information to be processed at a fraction of the price in a short period of time. To operate on a rollup, funds must be locked in a smart contract on the Layer 1 (L1) blockchain. This method allows transactions to be processed without the burden of the data associated with executing a transaction on the main chain, thus reducing transaction processing times and gas fees significantly.

To give you a full picture of how this works, imagine for a moment that the Ethereum network can process ten transactions at a time. This is much lower than what it can do, but it works for our purposes. If the network is busy, then the price of each transaction will go up, as users bid ever higher amounts to get their transactions processed first. Layer two solutions calculate transactions off the chain and then send them back in a bundle, which can include the data for lots of transactions, but which counts as one when Ethereum processes it. This increases how many transactions can be done simultaneously and lowers the price per transaction.

ZK Rollups: A Closer Look

There are two primary types of rollups currently in use for scaling Ethereum: ZK rollups and Optimistic rollups. The main difference lies in how a batch of transactions achieves finality.

In ZK rollups, which include protocols like zkSync and Loopring, each transaction batch is verified for correctness on the Ethereum network. Once the verification is successful, the transaction batch is considered final. This finality is achieved through cryptographic validity proofs, known as zero-knowledge proofs. For every batch of off-chain transactions, the ZK rollup operator generates a proof of validity. This proof is then submitted to Ethereum, making the rollup batch final. In the case of zkSync, this validation is performed via a SNARK (Succinct Non-Interactive Argument of Knowledge).

In contrast, Optimistic rollups deal with transaction finality quite differently. They operate on an ‘optimistic’ assumption that all transactions are valid unless proven otherwise. Instead of using cryptographic proofs, they rely on fraud proofs — a challenge mechanism against the submitted state to Ethereum. If a challenge arises, the Optimistic rollup operator must prove the validity of the questioned state and transactions. While this method allows for substantial increases in transaction throughput, it also necessitates vigilant watchers to ensure the operator’s integrity at all times, making it a somewhat cumbersome process.

zkSync: A Secure and Usable L2 Solution

zkSync is an L2 solution where L1 is the primary Ethereum blockchain. It provides a remarkable level of security and usability among existing L2 scaling solutions. Thanks to cutting-edge cryptography and on-chain data availability, ZK rollups, the backbone of zkSync, are the only L2 scaling solution that doesn’t necessitate any operational activity to safeguard funds.

Users can even go offline and be assured they can safely withdraw their assets when they return, even if the ZK rollup validators are no longer active. With zkSync, users can receive, deposit, and transfer assets at a reduced cost, and regain assets under their control to an L1 address. Currently, zkSync works with most applications on Ethereum and is persistently adding new features to extend its ecosystem.

Bella Protocol is gearing up to explore ZK-enhanced DeFi applications on zkSync. This exciting collaboration is poised to provide users with a wide selection of benefits. Keep an eye on our upcoming announcements, where we’ll delve deeper into the basics of the zkSync Era and explore why this is a thrilling move forward.

About Bella

Bella Protocol provides a suite of DeFi products for auto-compounding yield and developer tools for building DApps integrating Uniswap AMM. The main product, Bella Flex Savings V2, is a trusted smart mining product that allows users to experience low gas and management fee, auto return, token burn, and considerable yield farming incentives. Flex Savings V2 has been running on Ethereum for over 27 months, with the highest TVL of over $40 million.

Bella’s core team recently completed building a developer tool — Tuner. This programmatic Uniswap V3 simulator allows strategy backtesting on a transaction-to-transaction basis with arbitrary or historical data without the EVM. It runs independently yet completely retains the exact smart-contract behavior of the intricate design and implementation of Uniswap V3. Tuner now has 38 forks and 121 stars on GitHub.

Bella Protocol is backed by Binance Labs, Arrington XRP Capital, and several other renowned investors.

For more information about Bella, or to join our team, please contact us at contact@bella.fi

Learn about Bella’s recent official news:

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Bella Protocol

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