What is Mina?
Mina is an L1 blockchain based on zero knowledge proofs (ZKP) with smart contracts written in TypeScript. It is the first cryptocurrency protocol with a succinct blockchain (22KB).
Mina Protocol uses zero knowledge proofs to build a more ideal blockchain architecture.
Early blockchains, like Bitcoin and Ethereum, accumulate data over time and are currently hundreds of gigabytes in size. As time goes on, their blockchains will continue to increase in size. The entire chain history is required to verify the current consensus state of these networks.
With Mina, the blockchain always remains a constant size — about 22KB (the size of a few tweets). It's possible to verify the current consensus state of the protocol using this one recursive, 22KB zero knowledge proof. This means participants can quickly sync and verify the current consensus state of the network.
Learn more about Mina's unique protocol architecture.
What are zero knowledge proofs?
Mina's unique characteristics are made possible using zero knowledge proofs.
Learn more in this video about zero knowledge proofs.
What are zkApps?
Mina's zero knowledge smart contracts are referred to as zkApps. zkApps provide powerful and unique characteristics such as unlimited off-chain execution, privacy for private data inputs that are never seen by the blockchain, the ability to write smart contracts in TypeScript, and more.
See zkApps Overview.
How does consensus work on Mina?
The Mina network is secured by proof of stake (PoS) consensus called Ouroboros Samisika.
Based on Cardano's Ouroboros, Ouroboros Samisika is a PoS consensus mechanism that requires far less computing power than Bitcoin's proof of work (PoW) protocol.
With this model of Mina's consensus mechanism, you don't need expensive and energy-consuming mining equipment to participate in consensus. By simply holding MINA in your wallet, you can choose to stake it yourself by running a block producer node or delegate your MINA to another node.