This Bitcoin Developer Is About to Take on the Mining Hardware Industry

BtcDrak , the most active pseudonymous Bitcoin Core contributor to date, is making a budge into the mining hardware industry. The developer, who besides having contributed to the Bitcoin Core repository also maintains bitcoincore.org and the Bitcoin Core Community Slack , told Bitcoin Tv-programma he helped set up ASIC chip manufacturing company Halong Mining overheen the past year, and produced an initial batch of mining hardware, with plans to ship to consumers ter early 2018.

“We commenced a mining project with the aim to bring much needed competition to the market,” BtcDrak said. “We want to ‘make SHA256 good again.’”

The Miners

Spil listed on the company webstek, Halong Mining is launching a product line that consists of one machine for now: the DragonMint 16T. The miner — its name references the Dragons’ Dennenboom, an (ter)famous private talk channel on the Bitcoin Core Community Slack — is said to be tooled with freshly designed chips and can produce a total of 16 terahashes vanaf 2nd. Importantly, BtcDrak claims that the machines are about 30 procent more energy efficient than the most efficient ASIC miner on the market right now, Bitmain’s AntMiner S9.

“The DragonMint will be the most advanced miner to date,” he said.

The main knelpunt to injecting the ASIC market is typically capital: developing specialized chips from scrape is expensive. While BtcDrak preferred not to disclose much information about Halong Mining for now, he did note that the machines have bot produced by a team with “serious expertise.”

According to the developer, Halong Mining has invested $30 million ter research and development so far, with overheen 100 people involved, including chip designers, electronics hardware specialists and software designers.

“Research and development is not cheap, and wij need a loterijlot of diverse abilities,” BtcDrak explained.

Halong Mining has now produced a prototype batch of DragonMint machines for testing and fine-tuning, BtcDrak said, but thesis will not be sold to the public due to risk of switch sides engineering. He emphasized that the machines are working, however, adding:

“Other companies that want to inject the ASIC mining industry develop everything ter simulations, and then the very first presale batch attempts to pay for puny production. But the NRE [non-recurring engineering] and making wafers is fraught with difficulty, the very first run is not effortless to do well.”

Halong Mining published a movie of a DragonMint on YouTube today. BtcDrak thinks the very first mass-produced run of DragonMint miners will toebijten within about four months and start to ship te March of 2018.

Speciaal from the DragonMint machines, he says Halong Mining will also be selling mining chips separately, ter bulk.

The Competition

With the introduction of DragonMint miners, Halong Mining should opoffering an alternative for Bitmain’s mining hardware, which has predominated the market for the past few years. An estimated 70 procent or more of the hash power on the network today is produced by Bitmain machines, and around half of all hash power is pointed to mining pools that are either wielded by or closely affiliated with Bitmain, such spil AntPool, BTC.com, ConnectBTC and ViaBTC.

“One manufacturer spil a monopoly is not good for Bitcoin,” BtcDrak said. “Centralization ter mining is a problem regardless of how benevolent you are. If there is a center, then governments and criminals can attack it. Decentralization protects the entire system and all its participants. So I dreamed to bring competition.”

Bitmain te particular has also not made itself popular within segments of the Bitcoin community overheen the past years. The Chinese ASIC manufacturer wasgoed at the center of the AsicBoost and Antbleed controversies. And perhaps more importantly, some speculate that the company exerted its influence overheen the mining ecosystem by permitting or limiting hardware sales based on how hash power from the machines wasgoed used. Bitmain has always denied this is the case, however.

Halong Mining wants to distribute ASIC miners “far and broad to help decentralize mining,” BtcDrak said, adding that the company is considering open sourcing its houtvezelplaat designs and software. This would help fresh manufacturers get a foothold ter the industry, building on the research already done by Halong Mining overheen the past year.

“There is a loterijlot at stake here. A loterijlot of time and money has bot invested … and wij have a meaty chance to bring more diversity to Bitcoin mining, and te turn help secure the network more.”

This article wasgoed slightly updated, ter part to better reflect the scope (and boundaries) of our skill about Halong Mining and the DragonMint machines.

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