Zcash Used Chernobyl Radioactive Waste

Radioactive waste used to ensure the secrecy of Zcash network
30 January 2018   1769

The developers of anonymous cryptocurrency Zcash used radioactive waste from Chernobyl to ensure the secrecy of their network, CoinDesk reports.

As reported on the ZCash Foundation website, any calculation to create and confirm zero-disclosure evidence (zk-SNARKs) used in ZCash and a number of other anonymous crypto-currencies requires the specification of public parameters. If someone can unravel the algorithm for setting these parameters, he can create his own false evidence.

It is for this reason that ZCash developers conduct so-called Powers of Tau ceremonies, during which the most trusted persons, using complex procedures, set the initial parameters. This time, as an alternative to the generation of random parameters, radioactive waste was used.

According to the developer Andy Miller, the source of low-frequency radiation from gamma and beta particles was graphite, extracted from the reactor core of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. The Geiger counter connected to the number generator helped to translate the radiation into numerical values, which were integrated into the code.

The entropy source was a hardware-based random number generator utilizing a Geiger tube and a radioactive source, constructed and programmed by Ryan Pierce. [The graphite emitted very low levels of radiation], falling substantially below all thresholds that might restrict its transportation by air, and posting no health risk.

Andrew Miller


To ensure the impossibility of interference in the procedure of third parties, it was conducted at an altitude of 900 m above sea level in a private aircraft over the states of Illinois and Wisconsin. Also, developers, as a rule, destroy all computers or, at least, the software used to create the code.

In theory, this procedure allowed developers to get an absolutely random and private code snippet, which they can use to further improve Zcash.

Parity to Create Alternative Client for Zcash

New node will be written in the Rust language and will become the first alternative client for zcashd
20 March 2019   110

A leading developer of ecosystem solutions for Ethereum, Parity Technologies has announced a partnership with the Zcash Foundation. As part of this cooperation, the first alternative client for the private cryptocurrency Zcash will be created.

The message notes that the new node will be written in the Rust language and will become the first alternative client for zcashd - own client of Zcash Company.

In addition, according to the Zcash Foundation, Parity's expertise in creating the implementation of network nodes in networks with multiple clients demonstrated the importance of developing communities and further decentralization.

Our technical collaboration with the Zcash Foundation will bolster the cryptocurrency as a tool for financial privacy. We’re excited to leverage the time and expertise that we’ve already invested in Parity Bitcoin, while familiarizing our engineers with zero-knowledge cryptography and building a foundation for a Polkadot Zcash bridge.

Fredrik Harrysson

CTO, Parity

On Tuesday, March 19, the Chinese manufacturer of equipment for mining cryptocurrency Bitmain introduced the device Antminer Z11 based on a 12-nm chip. The new miner is focused on mining ZCash and other cryptocurrencies based on the Equihash algorithm, and as Bitmain claims, it is three times more powerful than its predecessor Antminer Z9 mini.