Introducing SOLAR: An Arweave-Solana Bridge for Housing High-Performance Blockchain Data on Arweave
We’re excited to showcase the recently created “SOLAR Bridge,” a connection between Solana and Arweave enabled by Bering Waters, an Arweave backer and investment group based out of Hong Kong. The bridge progressively and automatically stores ledger data from the Solana blockchain onto the permaweb, ensuring that Solana’s entire ledger history is made available on public infrastructure in perpetuity.
The potential of blockchains to serve as public utilities has been in discussion for years, with international governments and leading banks considering the values of blockchains in diverse sectors, from energy to governance. Ledgers and transaction histories they contain must be readily available and accessible forever in order for blockchains to function as intended. However, as the amount of data to be stored grows over time, high-performance blockchains are faced with a storage problem.
For high-performance blockchains such as Solana that produce massive quantities of data, scalable storage for network data is a vital utility. Just how much data are we talking? Solana produces blocks every 400 milliseconds. Since its launch in March 2020, the network has created 500 million blocks; more than double the blocks produced by the Ethereum, Bitcoin, Polkadot, Algorand, and Cosmos blockchains combined. Arweave’s unique affordances provide tailored storage solutions well-suited for storing massive and ever-increasing amounts of information.
Solana Co-Founder Anatoly Yakovenko is conscious of the storage dilemma facing high-output blockchains: “One of the challenges with building a high-performance smart contract platform is ensuring that the ledger data has a highly fault-tolerant, decentralized storage solution.” Furthermore, Arweave’s low cost, public accessibility, and data-agnostic status could provide an opportunity to increase interoperability between Solana and other blockchains. Yakovenko stated that he believes “in a multi-chain future where chains can and should specialize and interoperate. It doesn’t make sense to build a dedicated storage network and force that burden on validators when a perfectly amazing solution already exists and is more economically rational than anything we could build.”
Other projects are also beginning to utilise Arweave. Notably, SKALE and Blockswap have already built storage bridges to offload the costs and technical complexity of permanently storing their network data to Arweave. The creation of the SOLAR bridge points to an industry-wide trend in adopting responsible, sustainable data storage practices that address the problems of scalability and permanence.
If you’re interested in contributing to these projects or initiating a new bridge for another chain, we’d love to talk about how we can support those initiatives.