Sepolia, an Ethereum public testnet, which has already run through the Bellatrix upgrade on the Beacon Chain, is now ready to run through the Merge in the next few days.
Sepolia Testnet Merge: Details
It is no longer news that the Ethereum network is gearing towards a transition from its current Proof-of-Work (PoW) consensus algorithm to Proof-of-Stake (PoS). Ethereum intends to achieve this through the implementation of the Merge upgrade on its Mainnet.
Although the date for this epic upgrade is yet to be determined, the Ethereum mainnet Merge is around the corner considering that the team is currently final testing the Merge on public testnets.
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With the execution of the Merge on the Ropsten Testnet, Sepolia will be the second of three public testnets to run through the Merge. While the Goerli/Prater testnet will be the last to test run the Merge before the upgrade heads to the mainnet.
Notably, Sepolia went through the Bellatrix upgrade in June 2022, at epoch 100. With the successful Bellatrix upgrade, the Sepolia Beacon Chain was prepared for the Merge. Also, the Bellatrix upgrade caused Sepolia’s Terminal Total Difficulty (TTD) value to be changed from the initial high value of 100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.
This implies that the Sepolia testnet network will migrate to proof-of-stake (PoS) at an undisclosed date when the Terminal Total Difficulty (TTD) on the proof-of-work (PoW) chain exceeds 17,000,000,000,000,000.
In addition, Sepolia Merge will be a two-step process. According to the team, the process will begin with a network upgrade on the consensus layer at a certain epoch height.
Sequel to this, Sepolia’s execution layer (also known as Paris) will kickstart the transition from proof-of-work (PoW) to proof-of-stake (PoS) when the chosen TTD is reached or exceeded.
To complete the process, a Beacon Chain validator has to solely produce a succeeding block after the Sepolia’s execution layer has exceeded the chosen Terminal Total Difficulty.
“Assuming normal network conditions, this should happen 2 epochs or approximately 13 minutes after the first post-TTD block is hit.”
Sepolia’s testnet Merge is said to be achieved once the Beacon Chain creates this block.
Post-merge, only the Sepolia, and Georli testnets will remain very valuable. Others will be deprecated. Similarly, Sepolia will operate entirely under proof-of-stake after the Merge. Therefore, mining will no longer be possible on the network. The same will be the case on the Ethereum blockchain when the mainnet Merge goes live.
Ethereum Mainnet Merge
While many are awaiting this huge upgrade on the Ethereum mainnet to happen, no date has been announced yet. To estimate the exact date for the actual Merge, the final testing will be done on Goerli/Prater public testnet. Goerli is an execution layer testnet while Prater is a consensus layer testnet.
Furthermore, all three testnets deployments must be confirmed successful and stabilized to execute the mainnet Merge. Once confirmed to be stable, it is said that an epoch will be chosen for the Bellatrix upgrade on the mainnet Beacon Chain.
Also, a difficulty value will be set for the mainnet transition. Lastly, releases that will enable the Merge on the mainnet will then be issued by clients. It is at this point that the team will disclose the date for the consensus algorithm transitioning.