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  • The blockchain, named Espresso, prioritizes user privacy and decentralization.
  • Zero-knowledge proofs are used to prove a statement without revealing specific information.
  • Espresso announced on Monday that it raised $29.9 million in Series A funding.

Cryptography researchers from Stanford University are building Espresso, a one-layer blockchain that prioritizes user privacy and decentralization. Espresso recently made its public debut, announcing on Monday that it raised $29.9 million in Series A funding.

According to TechCrunch, the team behind the blockchain project is named Espresso Systems, which consists of CEO Ben Fisch, chief operating officer Charles Lu, chief scientist Benedikt Bünz, and various collaborators at Stanford University.

In an interview with TechCrunch, Fisch explained how Espresso increases privacy by utilizing zero-knowledge proofs, a cryptographic protocol that allows an individual to prove a statement without revealing specific information.

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A key component of Espresso is greater transaction throughput, which is accomplished through the use of ZK-Rollups technology. The ZK-Rollups will combine multiple transactions into one easily-verified proof, which reduces the overall load and bandwidth requirements of the platform.

While zero knowledge proofs improve the efficiency of blockchain platforms, they come at the cost of decentralization. Fisch explained, “If you use a zero-knowledge proof to prove the validity of a large number of transactions that never get sent to the consensus protocol, then while the consensus protocol can verify their validity, they’re not able to provide data to users that is needed for constructing future transactions.”