Beyond the Trilemma: Manta Network’s Four Phases and the Zero-Knowledge Proof Revolution

Kerala Blockchain Academy
4 min readMar 20, 2024

By Arya V N, Content Writer, Kerala Blockchain Academy

Manta Pacific — A New Era of Blockchain Innovation :

Manta Atlantic, the first and fastest ZK L1 chain on Polkadot, paved the way for Manta Pacific, the community-driven modular L2 ecosystem in the Manta ecosystem. $MANTA, the native token, was recently launched (Jan 18th 2024) to serve as liquidity and collateral in its ecosystem. It is used to participate in Manta Pacific’s fast-growing ecosystems like DeFi, SocialFi, and ZKApps. Manta Pacific, in the Mainnet, was launched on September 12, 2023.

Understanding the Significance of Modular Blockchain

The blockchain ecosystem faces several threats, and the blockchain trilemma (scalability, decentralisation and security) is one of the top challenges. Blockchains could only achieve two of the available three features in the trilemma. When Ethereum concentrated on decentralisation and security, Solana worked on scalability and security. The blockchain network consists of four layers, viz., Execution (transaction), Settlement (finality), Consensus (mining/ validation) and Data Availability (verification), and each layer is different from one another. When the four layers are used in one blockchain, such chains are called Monolithic blockchains. Bitcoin, Ethereum and Solana are a few monolithic blockchains. A modular blockchain concentrates only on one or two layers instead of having all the layers in a single blockchain. Celestia and Manta Network are examples of modular blockchains.

Exploring Zero-Knowledge Proofs (ZK)

Zero Knowledge Proofs helps provide proof about the statement without revealing any information. Many blockchain networks are using ZK Proof because it can validate multiple transactions in a single proof without compromising privacy and security. Zero Knowledge Proofs are quite complex and require some cryptographic expertise to develop a ZK-based application. Manta Network also understands the massive potential of ZK proof, but in most cases, developing ZK-based applications is not user-friendly and has lots of complexity. Manta Network solves this problem by introducing Universal circuits, a ZK-based library through which users can easily develop ZK-based applications.

Unlocking Manta Network’s Advantages

Compared to other Layer 2 networks, Manta stands out in cost-effectiveness. Manta has been observed to have 80% less gas fees using the Data Availability Layer using Celestia, making it a more economical choice. If an unfortunate occurrence forces Celestia to shut down, Manta automates its functioning through the Ethereum network. In Manta, there are ZK-based libraries that require no knowledge of the language. Compared to other L2 networks, Manta network allows developers to easily integrate ZK features with just a few lines of code. So, it reduces complexity and is developer-friendly.

Glimpse of Manta Network Ecosystem

Manta Pacific Network offers a wide variety of projects across various domains like Defi/Payments, Infrastructure, gaming/metaverse, identity, etc. The TVL locked in Manta Network is around 2.33 B. Here are the top projects in this ecosystem:-

  • LayerBank — It is a defi-based DApp which focuses on lending.
  • Carv Protocol — Building a gaming credential(ID) infrastructure.
  • Celestia — The modular blockchain used for the data availability layer (Infrastructure).
  • Dmail — This project sends mail to web3 addresses (Tools).
  • PacificSwap — A popular dex on Manta network.
  • SpaceID — One stop for Digital Identities (ID).

To explore additional projects, visit the Manta Ecosystem.

Navigating the Manta Network Roadmap

The Manta Network is currently undergoing its development phase, making significant strides in its journey toward completion. It has successfully navigated through two of its four planned phases now. Let’s delve deeper into these stages to understand the progress and groundwork for future developments.

Phase-I: Manta Pacific Alpha: The first phase is an Optimistic Rollup on Ethereum using Ethereum DA. In this phase, Manta launched Layer 2 in Ethereum and incorporated the ZK library. It deployed a ZK-based app on the top of Manta networks. Manta’s Universal Circuits enables developers without a ZK background to develop DApps with built-in ZK features to customise ZK circuits.

Phase-II: Manta Pacific Alpha 2: In the second phase, Manta introduced Celestia as a Data Availability layer. Manta Pacific aims to achieve data scaling by integrating Celestia’s modular DA to reduce gas fees.

Phase-III: Manta Pacific Beta: The third phase focuses on changing Op Stack to ZKEVM (Polygon CDK). In this transitional period, the multi-prover framework securely migrates to full ZKEVM.

Phase-IV: Manta Pacific Mainnet Production: The final phase intended to improve Universal Circuits. The phase aims to provide a better experience by reducing gas fees. Manta Pacific will integrate ZK proof to reduce the on-chain proof verification gas costs for ZK applications. It will improve the throughput for ZK processing and incorporate additional ZK schemes with smart contracts. It aims to provide a better user experience and achieve modularity, decentralisation and low gas costs.

The integration of the universal circuit and Zero-Knowledge (ZK) interface with Web3 applications demonstrates Manta Network’s innovative approach. Leveraging Celestia for data availability combines cost efficiency with high security. The upcoming transition to Zero-Knowledge Ethereum Virtual Machine (ZKEVM) via Polygon’s CDK is poised to significantly boost security and user experience. These strategic moves position Manta Pacific for a bright future, promising groundbreaking advancements in blockchain technology.





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