L1 vs L2

Layer 1 (L1) and Layer 2 (L2) blockchains are fundamental components of the blockchain ecosystem that serve distinct roles in achieving scalability and efficiency.

L1 blockchains, often referred to as the base layer, are the primary blockchains where transactions are processed and confirmed. Examples include Bitcoin and Ethereum. L1 blockchains execute the entire transaction process, from validating transactions to reaching consensus, making them secure and reliable but potentially constrained in terms of transaction throughput and speed.

On the other hand, Layer 2 solutions, or L2 blockchains, are built on top of L1 blockchains to address their scalability limitations. The interaction between L1 and L2 is a two-way street: L2 benefits from the security and decentralization of the L1 base layer, while L1 is relieved of some transaction processing, allowing it to maintain a more manageable load, increasing transaction speed and reducing fees.

First, L2 solutions rely on the security of the underlying L1 blockchain:

  • If the L1 network experiences vulnerabilities or attacks, the security of L2 networks may also be compromised.

  • If L1 faces congestion or network issues, it might adversely affect the L2's performance.

Second, building on an L2 rather than directly on L1 introduces specific risks:

  • While L2 solutions offer scalability advantages, they may not offer the same level of decentralization and security as L1 blockchains.

  • Moreover, the interoperability between L2 networks and L1 blockchains may not always be seamless, introducing complexities when transferring assets between layers.

Keom is based on Polygon PoS Mainnet, Polygon zkEVM Mainnet Beta, an L2 built atop Ethereum, as well as L2 chains using the Polygon Chain Development Kit (CDK), such as Manta Network.

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