What is Avalanche?

  • Avalanche is a decentralized, open-source proof of stake blockchain with smart contract functionality. Avalanche began as a protocol for solving for consensus in a network of unreliable machines, where failures may be crash-fault or Byzantine. The protocol's fundamentals were first shared on the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS) in May 2018 by a pseudonymous group of enthusiasts going by the name "Team Rocket”.

  • Avalanche was later developed by a dedicated team of researchers from Cornell University. The research was led by Emin Gün Sirer, a professor of computer science and software engineer, assisted by doctoral students Maofan "Ted" Yin and Kevin Sekniqi.

What is Avalanche Token?

AVAX is the native token of the Avalanche Network. The Avalanche blockchain can provide near-instant transaction finality. AVAX is used to pay transaction processing fees, secure the Avalanche network, and act as a basic unit of account among blockchains in the Avalanche network.

Consensus Mechanism

Staking in Avalanche

Staking is the process of locking up tokens to support a network while receiving a reward in return (rewards can be increased network utility, monetary compensation, etc.). The concept of staking was first formally introduced by Sunny King and Scott Nadal of Peercoin.

Staking Parameters on Avalanche

  • The minimum amount that a validator must stake is 2,000 AVAX

  • The minimum amount that a delegator must delegate is 25 AVAX

  • The minimum amount of time one can stake funds for validation is 2 weeks

  • The maximum amount of time one can stake funds for validation is 1 year

  • The minimum amount of time one can stake funds for delegation is 2 weeks

  • The maximum amount of time one can stake funds for delegation is 1 year

  • The minimum delegation fee rate is 2%

  • The maximum weight of a validator (their own stake + stake delegated to them) is the minimum of 3 million AVAX and 5 times the amount the validator staked. For example, if you staked 2,000 AVAX to become a validator, only 8000 AVAX can be delegated to your node total (not per delegator)


Validators secure Avalanche, create new blocks/vertices, and process transactions. To achieve consensus, validators repeatedly sample each other. The probability that a given validator is sampled is proportional to its stake.

When you add a node to the validator set, you specify:

  • Your node’s ID

  • When you want to start and stop validating

  • How many AVAX you are staking

  • The address to send any rewards to

  • Your delegation fee rate


A delegator is a token holder, who wants to participate in staking, but chooses to trust an existing validating node through delegation.

When you delegate stake to a validator, you specify:

  • The ID of the node you’re delegating to

  • When you want to start/stop delegating stake (must be while the validator is validating)

  • How many AVAX you are staking

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