per second, the Bitcoin network only supports 5-8 transactions per second .
Ethereum, which is proclaimed to be the general-purpose smart-contract en-
abled blockchain platform, is only able to handle approximately 20 transactions
per second [34, 8]. Another factor that is worth considering is the non-ﬁnality
and conﬁrmation latency. A transaction on the Bitcoin network takes up to
an hour to be reliably conﬁrmed (i.e., the transaction’s relevant parties are
conﬁdent that it will not be reversed), whereas that number for the Ethereum
network is about 10 minutes . These weaknesses pose too much of a burden
on any large-scale ﬁnancial service.
There is yet another concern that Bitcoin and Ethereum networks admit,
which is its lack of privacy/conﬁdentiality protections for transactions. All
transactions and/or data posted on these blockchains are not only visible to
their relevant parties, but also to the public. That is, they cannot safely store
or compute on sensitive data (e.g., clinical record, ﬁnancial transactions) .
While both Bitcoin and Ethereum networks adopt pseudonyms so as to oﬀer
a certain level of privacy protections, a large body of research has shown that
de-anonymizing such pseudonyms is feasible [29, 21].
2 Bridging the gap with the RVChain
We at Ritva set out to mitigate the aforementioned current state of aﬀair by
developing a performative general-purpose blockchain platform that supports
conﬁdential transactions, called RVChain. Abstractly, The RVChain takes ad-
vantage of the recent development in computer hardware, in particular CPUs
that are capable of provisioning Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) [23, 4,
3, 33, 6, 5, 12]. Another technical feature that enables the RVChain to operate
at scale is its capability to support parallel shadow chains whose transactions
can be totally ordered .
By incorporating TEE, RVChain eﬀectively simpliﬁes the threat model it has
to deal with to crash fault tolerance [20, 10, 7, 26], to which a number of perfor-
mative consensus protocols have been studied. To further scale the transaction
throughput of the platform alongside with its network size, RVChain allows
virtually unlimited number of shadow chains (subject only to the network size)
to complement one another. Network participants (or miners) are assigned to
a chain uniformly at random, and leverage crash fault tolerance consensus pro-
tocol to establish a total ordering of transactions on that chain. RVChain then
relies on a simple solution to establish a global order for transactions across the
parallel shadow chains, thereby attaining consistency. The preliminary design
of the RVChain currently supports approximately 2500 transactions per second
for the network consisting of 100 participants. Its theoretical foundation allows
the transaction to be processed at the network speed. That is, the only limit to
the performance of the RVChain is the speed at which it receives transactions.
With 5G technology on the horizon, the capacity is virtually limitless.
The other advantage of the TEE is its isolated execution . More specif-
ically, the TEE provisions a protected address space. Code and data running