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Towards interconnected blockchains: a comprehensive review of the role of interoperability among disparate blockchains

Lohachab, A ORCID: 0000-0002-5291-7860, Garg, S ORCID: 0000-0003-3510-2464, Kang, B ORCID: 0000-0003-3476-8838, Amin, MB ORCID: 0000-0001-7953-3958, Lee, J, Chen, S and Xu, X 2021 , 'Towards interconnected blockchains: a comprehensive review of the role of interoperability among disparate blockchains' , ACM Computing Survey, vol. 54, no. 7 , pp. 1-39 , doi: 10.1145/3460287.

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Unprecedented attention towards blockchain technology is serving as a game-changer in fostering the development of blockchain-enabled distinctive frameworks. However, fragmentation unleashed by its underlying concepts hinders different stakeholders from effectively utilizing blockchain-supported services, resulting in the obstruction of its wide-scale adoption. To explore synergies among the isolated frameworks requires comprehensively studying inter-blockchain communication approaches. These approaches broadly come under the umbrella of Blockchain Interoperability (BI) notion, as it can facilitate a novel paradigm of an integrated blockchain ecosystem that connects state-of-the-art disparate blockchains. Currently, there is a lack of studies that comprehensively review BI, which works as a stumbling block in its development. Therefore, this article aims to articulate potential of BI by reviewing it from diverse perspectives. Beginning with a glance of blockchain architecture fundamentals, this article discusses its associated platforms, taxonomy, and consensus mechanisms. Subsequently, it argues about BI’s requirement by exemplifying its potential opportunities and application areas. Concerning BI, an architecture seems to be a missing link. Hence, this article introduces a layered architecture for the effective development of protocols and methods for interoperable blockchains. Furthermore, this article proposes an in-depth BI research taxonomy and provides an insight into the state-of-the-art projects. Finally, it determines possible open challenges and future research in the domain.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Lohachab, A and Garg, S and Kang, B and Amin, MB and Lee, J and Chen, S and Xu, X
Keywords: blockchain, distributed systems, blockchain interoperability, taxonomy, consensus mechanisms, DLT
Journal or Publication Title: ACM Computing Survey
Publisher: Assoc Computing Machinery
ISSN: 0360-0300
DOI / ID Number: 10.1145/3460287
Copyright Information:

© 2021 Association for Computing Machinery

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