Amphora: A major merger milestone

Earlier this year, the Rayon Hackathon Begin to design an architectural prototype for the transition from Ethereum to Proof of Stake. Conversion, usually referred to as merging, will retain the existing beacon chain (eth2) and execution layer (eth1) clients, and “merge” these two chains by enabling the beacon chain to drive the consensus of the execution layer.This method is the latest in a series of iterations of the Ethereum roadmap (more on here).

Although Rayonism proved that this is a reasonable architecture, there are still some things that need to be designed, implemented, and tested, including the transition from actual proof-of-work (PoW) to proof-of-stake (PoS).To this end, the client team met last week (similar to Eth2 interoperability in 2019) A workshop called Amphora 🏺.

The following is an overview of the main work done during the seminar and the path from here to the merger.

Amphora milestone

The purpose of this activity is to allow the execution and consensus level customer teams to resolve outstanding issues in the specification and reach a series of development milestones. Each milestone brings customers closer to a fully functional, consolidated development network that transitions from PoW to PoS. Representatives of Besu, Erigon, EthereumJS, Geth, Nethermind, Nimbus, Lighthouse, Lodestar, Quilt and Teku attended the seminar in person. The Prysm team and several members from the aforementioned teams participated remotely.

this Amphora milestone The aim is to get customers to comply with the specification first, then gradually add more complexity, and finally increase the number of other customers with which they can interoperate.

The first milestone M1 only requires the client to implement the merge specification. Most teams complete it even before the seminar starts! To help customers verify their implementation, Some —— test —— suite Provided.

Then, milestones M2, M3, and M4 allowed the client team to establish a development network with ever-increasing technical complexity and node diversity. M2 has one-to-one execution layer (EL) and consensus layer (CL) teams, and launches the combined development network.This ensures that both layers can pass Engine API In the context of PoS.

M3 is where the Amphora seminar surpasses Rayonism: the client establishes a temporary development network and transitions from PoW to PoS.

The conversion is based on PoW difficulty: once the difficulty of a block equals or exceeds a certain value, it is called TERMINAL_TOTAL_DIFFICULTY, or TTD, It is considered the final PoW block. Then the execution layer starts to monitor the PoS consensus layer of the new block. To ensure that the implementation of each team is robust, the EL team must connect to two CL clients and vice versa to pass M3.

M4 is the real goal of the event: to obtain multiple EL and CL clients on the development network that has undergone the entire PoW to PoS transition. In other words, M3 is a one-to-one development network, while M4 is a many-to-many.

We achieved this goal for some teams before the end of the seminar, so we achieved our extended goal: M5.

Lasting artifact

This milestone aims to transform Amphora from a short-lived event into a long-term (er) life infrastructure that the community can use. M5 requires the customer team to start a development network that will not only run through the entire transition of all customer portfolios, but will continue to exist after the Amphora incident.

On the last day of the seminar, a few minutes before the last dinner, M5 was hit: a network of 10,000 validators on 100 nodes and several clients launched under PoW reached TERMINAL_TOTAL_DIFFICULTY, Transition to PoS, and successfully set the chain 🎉!

M5 Development Network successfully completed the post-merger work a few minutes before the closing dinner of the seminar. Photo by Ben Ekington.

Beyond amphora

The success of Amphora has provided The Merge with tremendous motivation.The customer team now has a Clear task list They need to work hard and have made enough progress to start reaching a larger part of the Ethereum community.

Yesterday, a more stable version of M5 Amphora devnet, Pitos, Has been activated, launched.Now this network is active (resource manager here), looking forward to a public call to explore how developer tools and other core Ethereum infrastructure can best prepare for the PoW to PoS transition.

The client team and researchers will continue to iterate the The Merge specification to fix the issues discovered during Amphora and respond to community feedback. In a few weeks, the specifications should be finalized, and a new stable testnet will be available soon.


The work done during Amphora exceeded all our expectations. For this, we would like to thank the client team and researchers, without them, no specifications would be written or implemented.

Also, thanks Consensus system, Safety chain with Ben Ekington Because of their excellent coverage of the seminar.

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