The Ethereum Merge may come sooner than planned, after core developers announced a tentative merge date of September 15, 2022, which will see the blockchain transition to Proof-of-stake.
The Merge was originally anticipated to take place on or around September 19, 2022. Ethereum is changing from a PoW network that depends on miners to validate transactions to one that depends on validators who “stake” Ethereum tokens in exchange for a chance to validate transactions (PoS).
Anthony Sassano, independent “Ethereum educator” who co-founded Ethereum research website EthHub wrote that “the merge is coming”, adding that the Ethereum mainnet merge has been tentatively scheduled for around September 15th/16th.
Citing an August 11 developer call with core developers Tim Beiko and Prysmatic Labs co-founder Terence Tsao, Anthony said that they have agreed that the Ethereum mainnet merge would happen when the Total Terminal Difficulty (TTD) reaches 58750000000000000000000.
This was confirmed in a Github post titled “Tentative mainnet TTD” which was committed to by Beiko on Aug. 11.
Two essential steps must be completed before Ethereum completes its upgrade: known as “Bellatrix” and “Paris”. Developers stated that “Bellatrix” will happen on September 6 while “Paris” will happen when Ethereum’s hash rate reaches a certain level.
Ethereum’s shift to the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) validation process means that the blockchain will no longer be validated by Proof-of-Work. Validators will replace miners and keep the network secure by locking up the network’s native crypto.
The crypto community has been reacting differently to the upgrade. Some see the risk of eradicating miners and exposing Ethereum to greater security breaches. Some even proposed forks to preserve Ethereum’s PoW consensus mechanism. While others see a drastic decrease in the network’s energy consumption (by more than 99.99%), and improving security and scalability.