The energy consumption of Bitcoin – its “Achilles heel”


Supporters of Bitcoin argue that it is protected from government control. “It’s impossible to disable”, they say. Perhaps it was at first, when you mine bitcoins on a regular laptop. But in the days of the giant mining farm Bitcoin is in dire need of an abundant supply of cheap electricity. Without access to abundant electricity, mining cannot continue, and without mining Bitcoin will die. The supply of electricity, as we all already knew, controlled by the government.

Urgent need of Bitcoin in electricity due to its Protocol of proof of execution (Proof of Work (PoW)). PoW is often described as “complex problems” facing the miners with Bitcoin to receive the right to verify a block of transactions and claim the reward for mining in size (at the moment) 12,5 new BTC plus the transaction fees. In this article, for example, the author describes PoW: “These calculations to search for blocks – in fact, the mathematical tasks that the miner can’t just guess without lengthy calculations”.

The impression that diligent miners with advanced equipment to succeed. So. But not because the tasks require analytical skills. The reality is much more prosaic.

PoW generates a hash (sequence of digits). Miners have to find that consistency. But it is wrong to describe it as a “task” that can be “solved”. There are no clues, no logic. There is only the hash. So miners are just guessing. The more options sec miners can go through, the higher their chance to guess the correct sequence before the others. This is more like a lottery. The more tickets you bought, the higher your chances of winning. That’s all. No analytical skills are not needed. You should not be able to solve the problem. Just need a very fast computer and access to the limitless electricity.

The famous “correction of problems”, forcing the miners to work harder to get the reward, when the price of Bitcoins rising, just makes the hash longer, and therefore it becomes more difficult to guess. No intelligence is not used here. Nobody needs to use their brains. “Complex challenges” is a myth.

The number of variants per second, which should be examined for mining block known as the “computing power” (Hasrat), and it grows together with the complexity. Computing power to keep up with the growth of complexity, the miners need faster hardware. Therefore, the increase in the price of Bitcoin rise to an “arms race” between the miners. They need to constantly upgrade to more advanced equipment, otherwise they will lose out to other miners.

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