Plasma and The Raiden Network are off-chain scalability solutions initially proposed for the Ethereum network. The Raiden Network is currently undergoing strong development and the operational implementation of μRaiden should be implemented shortly on the main Ethereum network.
Plasma already has a working MVP on OmiseGo and is currently working on a Plasma Cash implementation along with Ethereum. The Loom Network domains are a similar concept to Plasma, and Loom has declared their planned integration with the Ethereum Plasma Cash implementation to better protect gambling resources on dappchains.
growing for Ethereum as dapps are currently unsustainable and many users are looking for alternatives. Plasma and the Raiden network offer the necessary relief for the network to help it adapt to the necessary levels.
There are many moving parts with both technologies (especially the plasma), so let's dive and try to cover the general concepts.
What is Raiden Network?
Quite simply, Raiden Network is the Ethereum version of Bitcoin's Lightning Network. This is an off-chain scalability solution compatible with ERC-20 token transfers in bidirectional payment channels.
The underlying architecture is complicated, but interaction with Raiden only requires developers to interact with an API to create scalable applications in addition to it. Raiden is designed to provide near-instant payments, greater transaction privacy, micropayments, low commissions and atomic token exchanges. The Raiden payment channels are off-chain and only occasionally establish themselves on the chain, greatly reducing the capacity of chain transactions.
Raiden ignores the need for global consensus on the status of the network required for chain transactions. It does so by exploiting the blocked hash transfers called balance tests . Balance tests are guaranteed by in-chain deposits made before setting bidirectional payment channels. Bidirectional payment channels allow almost unlimited token transfers between two participants provided that their net sum does not exceed the amount of the initial deposit.
If this sounds familiar, it is because it reflects the operation of Bitcoin's Lightning Network, subject to some variations. The name " The Raiden Network " derives from its existence as a protocol for routing and channel transfer between mesh networks.
Three current projects include Raiden:
- Raiden Network  Raidos
μRaiden (pronounced Micro Raiden) is the project with a working implementation that will be available soon.μRaiden is designed with a many-to-one payment setup, which makes it possible to act as a payment channel between many users and an individual at all. Its technological capacity is limited compared to other projects, which is why it is soon available.
Raiden Network is the main version of Raiden and is still in development.The team behind Raiden Network understands the complexities that accompany such a project along with its criticism.Before launching a technology ready for production, they want to make sure that they respond to the concerns related to technology such as routing efficiency, liquidity problems, lack of broad payment support and potential centralization.
Raidos is a sidechain technology for generalizes the status channels . Generalized status channels can be used to implement arbitrary-state machines that would allow Ethereum's computing capabilities to scale satellite chains. However, this concept is under heavy research and in the planning phase. It is complementary to the sharding, but will hardly be available for quite some time.
What is the plasma?
Plasma is a series of contracts executed on a main chain (main chain of Ethereum) and consists of a network of " secondary chains " (only sidechain) connected to a root chain in a hierarchical structure tree. The plasma is in particular integrated with Ethereum and OmiseGo.
The concept is that the main chain processes a small number of commitments from the chains of children so that the root chain acts as the safest and most definitive level of settlement for the chains of children. Each chain of children works as their own blockchain with their own consent, but there are some important caveats.
The process of conceptually using Plasma works as follows:
- Intelligent contracts created on the root chain and serve as anchor of the secondary chain
- A child chain is created that functions as its own blockchain with its own consent ( generally not PoW but something like PoS)
- All statuses within the child chain are applied with fraud tests which ensure that all status transitions are valid and require the protocol to withdrawal of funds (more on this later)
- Smart contracts specific to that chain of first or secondary (application logic) can then be distributed to the secondary chain
- Necessary resources can be transferred from the main chain to the chain of children
- Block validators who are incentivized to act honestly occasionally send commitments to the main chain – the final liquidation level.
The result is that users of a su running on a child chain must never actually interact with the root chain. Furthermore, they can withdraw their resources to the root chain whenever they wish, even if the secondary chain is compromised . These outputs from the chain of children allow users to securely store their funds / assets through a Merkle trial that verifies ownership of a certain amount of funds.
The main advantages of Plasma derive from its ability to substantially alleviate the calculation that currently congested the main chain. In addition, the Ethereum blockchain can handle larger and more competitive data sets. The burden that is removed in the root chain also translates into the Ethereum nodes, which are rewarded with lower processing and archiving requirements.
Plasma Cash is a construction that provides tokens on the network with unique serial numbers that turn them into unique coins. Among the benefits of this there is no need for confirmations, more direct support for all types of tokens (including NFTs) and attenuation of mass exits in the children's chain (discussed in the next section). OmiseGo is currently working on a proof of concept for Plasma Cash and Loom is planning the use of Plasma Cash to facilitate Exec Plasma for their dappchains.
A concern for Plasma is the concept of "mass exits" from the chains of the child. In this scenario, a simultaneous coordinated exit from the children's chain could result in a lack of processing capacity to withdraw all funds. As a result, users could lose funds.
Plasma and Raiden are part of a larger effort to help the Ethereum scale to levels ready for production. Currently, Ethereum's scale problems are well documented and concerns increase with downward pressure on prices as part of an extended bear market.
Apparently, some of the promising scaling solutions for Ethereum will soon begin to materialize; otherwise, projects focused on improving the Ethereum model will start stealing more market shares. Furthermore, the excitement surrounding interoperability and scalable platforms such as Cosmos and Polkadot could come before Ethereum can scale effectively.
The complexity of Ethereum makes scalability much more challenging than other platforms, especially platforms with much simpler scripting languages like Bitcoin. Ethereum has a huge amount of development activity on it with several projects working to increase its capacity. It is difficult to see the network that ultimately does not resize itself, but it could prove too late for many users and developers looking to build scalable.
Read: Ethereum: Definitive Guide to this Decentralized Computing Platform  Interesting solutions such as the ten-fold protocol may offer a more immediate suspension for developers looking to build up on Ethereum. Being a platform and language-independent technology, it could allow developers to create scalable interfaces on Ethereum before larger projects come into effect.
The next months that will lead to next year will be an essential moment in the cryptocurrency space. Many projects that have been under development will come into operation with some innovative technologies and further developments of interoperability solutions should start to make their way. The role of Ethereum in this new panorama will take place transparently and will offer some excellent insights into the wider community feeling.
Regardless of the success or effectiveness of scaling solutions proposed for Ethereum, they are pushing the envelope of technological innovation.