25 March 2020

Introducing Heartwood, the next major Zcash upgrade

Today the Electric Coin Company released a blog detailing Heartwood, the next major Zcash network upgrade. Heartwood will improve interoperability through Flyclient support and give miners the option to immediately shield mining rewards in coinbase transactions.

Flyclient, known as ZIP 211, will enable interoperability efforts, cross-chain integration, and light-client use cases. The ZIP could pave the way for Zcash SPV proofs to be verified in blockchains such as Ethereum, enabling efficient cross-chain communication and pegs.

Shielded Coinbase, known as ZIP 213, will modify Zcash consensus rules to enable coinbase funds to be mined to shielded Sapling addresses. Prior to the Sapling upgrade, a shielded coinbase was not feasible because shielded transactions required significant memory and CPU resources to create.

The feature selection for this upgrade was determined in the community forum in June 2019, and the block height for Heartwood will be announced in Q2.

Why it matters: - With a regular upgrade schedule, Zcash not only aids it’s community’s preparedness for network upgrades, but also allows for continuous improvement of its nascent protocol. - With its next two upgrades called for, the Zcash community has roadmap clarity throughout 2020.

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