- General questions
- TPC token
- Is TPC an ERC20 token?
- Can I send ERC20 TPC tokens to my TechPay Wallet?
- What’s the purpose of the TPC token?
- 1. Securing the network
- 2. Paying for network fees
- 3. Voting in on-chain governance
- 4. Additional use cases
- How can I stake TPC?
- Can I stake TPC on exchanges like Binance?
- How to run a validator on Photon?
- Where can I store TPC
- Photon network
This guide addresses as many questions you might have about TechPay as possible. Please refer to this TPC section before asking questions on Discord. If your question is still unanswered, please reach out to us through the chat function in our website after login or join our Discord.
General questions #
What is a consensus algorithm? #
A consensus algorithm is a mechanism to reach agreement among nodes in distributed networks. It removes the need for a central authority and allows the whole network to agree on data and the ordering of events in a trustless way.
Nodes participating in the network maintain an exact copy of the ledger, allowing applications built on top of the consensus protocol to function correctly.
What is pBFT (Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerant) consensus? How is it different from blockchains such as Ethereum and Bitcoin? #
pBFT consensus stands for “practical Byzantine Fault Tolerant” consensus. When a network is said to be “Byzantine Fault Tolerant”, it means that nodes can still reach an agreement on an ordering of events even if part of the network acts maliciously.
Practical BFT allows nodes in the network to confirm event blocks containing transactions without depending on any timing assumptions. This makes the confirmation of transactions by the network faster, without compromising security or decentralization. When a transaction is confirmed by the network, it achieves complete finality and can’t be changed nor reverted. pBFT consensus reaches agreement on transactions even when some of the messages between nodes are lost, which makes the network more resilient
Blockchains such as Ethereum and Bitcoin are synchronous, meaning that transactions are appended into blocks, one at a time. They follow the longest-chain rule in which the chain with the most number of blocks determines the final ordering of events. Transactions in earlier blocks have a much higher probability of being part of the final ordering of events compared to more recent transactions. Therefore, these networks require multiple confirmations to ensure that a transaction is permanently part of the blockchain. This behavior leads to a slower confirmation of the transactions than in pBFT consensus.
What is finality? #
Finality means that a transaction cannot be changed or reversed by any party. pBFT consensus algorithms such as Sirius have a very low time to finality because they achieve absolute finality. Absolute finality means that a transaction is considered final once it is included in a block.
In the case of TechPay, Photon Chain can accomplish finality in 1 to 2 seconds. TxFlow can achieve finality in less than a second.
Conversely, Nakamoto consensus protocols rely on probabilistic finality. In this case, the probability that a transaction won’t be reverted increases with time. The more blocks that are created on top of a block, thereby confirming it as correct, the more difficult and costlier it would be to revert a transaction in that block. At some point it becomes theoretically impossible to alter older blocks, increasing the probabilistic finality to near 100%.
Bitcoin has finality of 30 to 60 minutes; when using Bitcoin you have to wait a few block confirmations before considering the transaction final and irreversible. Ethereum has a finality of a few minutes.
What is TxFlow? #
TxFlow is an pBFT middleware protocol designed for responsiveness. It runs together with a traditional consensus algorithm such as Sirius, which guarantees network security.
What is finality? #
TxFlow can achieve sub-second latency, which makes it ideal for any application that requires instant confirmation. Check the github and the TxFlow introduction
TPC token #
Is TPC an ERC20 token? #
TechPay has an ERC20 token, but it can’t be used directly on the Photon mainnet. When you send your ERC-20 to the TechPayWallet , it will automatically be swapped to Photon TPC.
Here’s a breakdown of the different TPC tokens in circulation at the moment
- Photon TPC: Used on TechPay’s mainnet Photon Chain
- ERC20: Exists on the Ethereum network
- BEP2: Exists on Binance Chain
Note that techPay Photon addresses share the same structure as Ethereum addresses (0x…), but they are not Ethereum addresses.
Can I send ERC20 TPC tokens to my TechPay Wallet? #
No. You need to swap them first to mainnet TPC using https://multichain.xyz/
What’s the purpose of the TPC token? #
The TPC token has a number of use cases within the TechPay ecosystem. It plays an essential role for a well-functioning, healthy network.
1. Securing the network #
TechPay uses a Proof-of-Stake system that requires validators to hold TPC. Anyone with at least 1,000,000 TPC can run their own validator node to earn epoch rewards and transaction fees. Every TPC holder has the option to delegate their tokens to a validator (while keeping full custody of their funds) to receive staking rewards. Validators then take a small fee for their services.
By locking in their TPC, validators help the network to be decentralized and secure.
2. Paying for network fees #
To compensate validators for their services and prevent transaction spam, every action performed within the TechPay network costs a small fee. This fee is paid in TPC.
3. Voting in on-chain governance #
Decisions regarding the TechPay ecosystem are made using transparent on-chain voting. Votes are weighted according to the amount of TPC held by an entity. Basically, 1 TPC equals 1 vote.
With TPC as the governance token, validators and delegators can vote on network parameters such as block rewards as well technical committees and so forth.
4. Additional use cases #
TPC is used as a collateral on the TechPay DeFi suite
How can I stake TPC? #
Check out this guide
Can I stake TPC on exchanges like Binance? #
You can’t stake TPC on exchanges at the moment.
How to run a validator on Photon? #
To run a validator node on TechPay’s Photon Chain, the followings are required:
- A minimum stake of 1,000,000 TPC;
- AWS EC2 m5.xlarge with 4 vCPUs (3.1 GHz) and at least 1TB of Amazon EBS General Purpose SSD (gp2) storage (or equivalent).
Where can I store TPC #
You can store Photon TPC on our official PWA Wallet for mobile and desktop.
Please note that the above wallets only support Photon Network TPC They do not support ERC20 or BEP2.
We are working with other wallet providers to add compatibility for the TPC token.
Photon network #
What is Photon? #
Photon is a fully decentralized blockchain network with smart contracts integration for applications. It is compatible with the Ethereum Virtual Machine and powered by TechPay’s pBFT consensus. Thus, smart contracts developed on Ethereum can run on Photon, with an increase of scalability and security.
Is TechPay compatible with Ethereum smart contracts? #
Yes. TechPay’s Photon Network is fully compatible with the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). It also has Web3JS API and RPC support. All smart contracts written in Solidity or Vyper, compiled and deployed on Ethereum, are fully compatible with the Photon Network.
Is TechPay compatible with Cosmos SDK? #
Yes. Developers can use TechPay’s uber-fast and secure pBFT consensus mechanism as a base layer and use the Cosmos SDK on top of it.
What programming languages does TechPay support? #
TechPay’s Photon network supports all smart contract languages that Ethereum supports for the EVM, which include both Solidity and Vyper.
When did TechPay mainnet go live? #
The TechPay Photon Chain went live in early 2022.
How is TechPay governed? What does on-chain governance look like? #
The TechPay is currently in charge of the governance of the network, advised by the community and validator nodes. We plan to launch a governance smart contract that will allow validators and token holders to determine the direction of TechPay, as well as to approve changes to the underlying consensus via hard and soft forks.