Chorus One has received a grant by the Web3 Foundation to develop parts of a bridge that will enable Substrate and Cosmos SDK-based blockchains to interoperate as part of the fifth grant cohort.

Such interoperability will allow, for example, a user on a Cosmos SDK blockchain to move TerraUSD coins to Substrate chains to take advantage of applications in the Polkadot ecosystem.

Connecting Two Vibrant Ecosystems

A core piece of Chorus One's vision is the ability to freely transfer value and information across sovereign blockchain networks and applications. The Polkadot and Cosmos ecosystems have both been at the forefront of cross-chain interoperability.

We are excited to contribute to bridging these two ecosystems with this initial project that will enable Cosmos SDK blockchains to keep track of consensus updates on Substrate-based networks.

Polkadot combines the versatility of heterogeneous blockchains with the security and convenience of a single security pool and validator set. This is one of the most daring and promising visions of the blockchain space and could unleash unparalleled innovation. The Polkadot ecosystem is consistently shipping great software to advance that vision. We are incredibly excited to help bridge the flourishing Polkadot and Cosmos communities.

Brian Fabian Crain, CEO of Chorus One

A Substrate light client that's compatible with the Cosmos SDK is a great first step towards bridging the Polkadot and Cosmos ecosystems. We’re excited to see the results of this work and eventually a complete bridge between both networks.

Dieter Fishbein, Head of Ecosystem Development at Web3 Foundation

What We Are Building

This grant-funded project lays the groundwork for a bridge between Polkadot and Cosmos. The current project code consists of three parts: a relayer implementation that allows necessary information to pass between two blockchains, a Substrate-IBC module for the Cosmos SDK that is geared towards handling Substrate data, and a Substrate client consisting of WebAssembly bytecode to verify BABE and GRANDPA consensus information on Cosmos chains. In order to have a fully functional bridge, a second follow-on project that allows Substrate chains to validate Tendermint messages is required.

Our WebAssembly Light Client design for Substrate on Cosmos SDK can be extended to support any other blockchains whose light client logic is compile-able to Wasm. One key advantage of the design is the ability to upgrade the Substrate light client, which is derived from the canonical Rust implementation, on Cosmos SDK chains without requiring a full governance process and hard fork for each upgrade. Additionally, the design may be able to easily handle consensus algorithms and allow them to interoperate with the Cosmos ecosystem via IBC. Find the full details and technical description of our approach here.

We are excited to contribute to realizing a world of interconnected blockchains. If you are interested in working with us on this, reach out to us via the channels linked below.

About Chorus One

Chorus One is operating validation infrastructure and building tools to advance the Proof-of-Stake ecosystem.

We will offer staking on Polkadot when the network goes live. You will be able to support our work and earn staking rewards by nominating our validators with your DOTs.

Website: https://chorus.one
Anthem Staking Platform: https://anthem.chorus.one
Twitter: https://twitter.com/chorusone
Telegram: https://t.me/chorusone

Image on cover art by Aaron Burden on Unsplash.