MERCURY: Fast Transaction Broadcast in High Performance Blockchain Systems


Ivan Beschastnikh, Mingxun Zhou, Yilin Han, Liyi Zeng, Peilun Li, Fan Long, Dong Zhou, Ming Wu

Date of Publication


Blockchain systems must be secure and offer high performance. A key mechanism that these systems rely on to provide both of these features is transaction broadcast. Unfortunately, in today's systems, the broadcast protocols are highly inefficient. The wide adoption of public blockchain systems increases the importance of high performance blockchain infrastructure that offers both high throughput and low transaction confirmation latency. Underlying such infrastructures is a fast, efficient, and robust transaction broadcast mechanism.

We present Mercury, a new transaction broadcast protocol designed for high performance blockchains. Mercury shortens the transaction propagation delay using two techniques: a virtual coordinate system (VCS) and an early outburst strategy. Our simulation results show that Mercury outperforms prior propagation schemes and decreases overall propagation latency by up to 44%. When implemented in Conflux, an open-source high-throughput blockchain system, Mercury reduces transaction propagation latency by over 50% with a bandwidth overhead of less than 5%.

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First Nations land acknowledegement

We acknowledge that the UBC Point Grey campus is situated on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm.

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