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The basics

Polygon zkEVM, introduced by the Polygon (formerly Matic) team in March 2023, represents the latest advancement in Polygon's efforts to provide a Layer 2 scalability solution. Using cryptographic zero-knowledge proofs to offer validity and quick finality to off-chain transaction computation, also known as a ZK-Rollup. It is the first zkEVM to be fully equivalent to an EVM, meaning that all existing smart contracts, developer toolings, and wallets work seamlessly. Polygon zkEVM provides a complete EVM-like experience for developers and users alike, with significantly lower transaction costs and higher throughput than Ethereum.

Mainnet and Testnet

SettleMint supports both the Polygon zkEVM Mainnet and the Testnet.

The Mainnet is the primary public Polygon zkEVM production blockchain, where actual-value transactions take place. Polygon zkEVM does not have its own native token. Instead, it uses MATIC, the native token of the Polygon network, for transactions, gas fees, and other network activities. The Testnet is an instance of the blockchain to be used for testing and experimentation. There are also coins used in the Testnet but they have no value, so there is no risk of real fund.

You can consider the Testnet as a prototype and the Mainnet as the official production blockchain. Or think of this as an analog to production versus staging servers.


zkEVM stands for "zero-knowledge Ethereum Virtual Machine". It is a type of Ethereum scaling solution that uses zero-knowledge proofs (ZKPs) to verify the validity of transactions off-chain. This means that zkEVMs can process thousands or even millions of transactions per second, with very low fees.

ZKPs are a cryptographic technique that allows someone to prove that they know a piece of information without revealing the information itself. In the context of zkEVMs, ZKPs are used to prove that a batch of transactions has been processed correctly, without revealing the individual transactions in the batch.

Here are some of the benefits of zkEVMs:

  • Scalability: zkEVMs can process thousands or even millions of transactions per second, which is much faster than Ethereum's current throughput.
  • Low fees: zkEVMs can significantly reduce transaction fees, making Ethereum more affordable to use.
  • Security: zkEVMs are just as secure as Ethereum, as they use the same underlying blockchain technology.
  • Compatibility: zkEVMs are compatible with existing Ethereum smart contracts and wallets, so developers and users can start using them immediately.

In a nutshell, Polygon zkEVM allows you to use Ethereum with the scalability and low fees of a Layer 2 solution.

Consensus mechanism

The Polygon zkEVM consensus algorithm is a permissionless system that allows anyone to participate in the process of validating and finalizing transactions. It is based on a Proof of Efficiency (PoE) mechanism, which rewards participants for their contributions to the network.

The Polygon zkEVM consensus algorithm works as follows:

  1. Sequencers propose batches of transactions to the network.
  2. Validators verify the validity of the proposed batches and generate proofs of correctness.
  3. Aggregators aggregate the proofs from the validators and submit them to the Consensus Contract.
  4. The Consensus Contract verifies the proofs and finalizes the transactions.

Sequencers, validators, and aggregators are all incentivized to participate in the network by receiving rewards in MATIC, the native token of the Polygon network.

The Polygon zkEVM consensus algorithm is designed to be secure, efficient, and fair. It is also designed to be compatible with the Ethereum mainnet, so that users can easily move their assets between the two networks.

More information on the consensus mechanism can be found on the official Polygon website.