The successful replication of the upcoming Shanghai hard fork, scheduled for March on the Ethereum mainnet, the Ethereum Shapella network, was successfully activated today on the Sepolia testnet at epoch 56832 of the Ethereum blockchain.
This upgrade adds new capabilities to both the execution and consensus layers. Validators can now withdraw their ETH stake from the Beacon Chain and transfer it to the execution layer. The Shanghai fork is the term used on the client side of the execution layer, while on the client side of the consensus layer, it is referred to as Capella. Hence, the name “Shapella.”
According to a tweet from Ethereum developers, the Shapella network has been fully launched on the Sepolia testnet. The upcoming upgrade will first be deployed on the Goerli testnet and then on the mainnet, which will finalize the Shanghai upgrade.
Validators who want to participate in Ethereum blockchain validation must stake 32 ether (ETH). They have the option to withdraw their 32 ETH and stop validating at any time. They will be able to withdraw rewards in excess of 32 ETH if they so desire.
The upgrade is expected to improve the execution and consensus layer capabilities. Hence, both staking and non-staking node operators have been advised to upgrade their nodes to the required Ethereum client version to benefit from the enhancements.
Earlier this month, Tim Beiko tweeted that Ethereum core developers had discovered a Shapella bug that could affect the Sepolia update. However, after conducting another Hive test, it was determined that the upgrade would not be impacted.
Validators started staking ETH following the launch of the Beacon Chain in December 2020. In exchange for locking up their tokens, stakers receive liquid tokens called stETH or staked ETH as incentives.
With the Shanghai (Shapella) upgrade on the horizon, Ethereum validators and users who have had their stakes locked up for three years can now look forward to being able to withdraw their staked ETH.
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