The Rollup OS for Ethereum

In Dec 2020, Fuel Labs launched Fuel V1, the first optimistic rollup on Ethereum, and the first to achieve stage 2 security status. Over the past three years, the team has continued to evolve the design and is excited to announce that Fuel mainnet will be launching in Q3, 2024.

Today, we unveil the vision that will shape the future of Fuel as we prepare to launch the most powerful system for rollups on Ethereum, and the first rollup in the Fuel Network.

In short, Fuel is an operating system purpose-built for Ethereum Rollups, designed to help developers build decentralized economies at scale.

The Problem

The Ethereum ecosystem is currently seeing a cambrian explosion of modular L2 chains, ranging from traditional EVM-based rollups to non-EVM setups, most of which are run by general-purpose computation systems or L1 Virtual Machines (VMs). While Ethereum rollups have made huge strides in performance and features, there is still a large capability gap between monolithic L1s and Ethereum rollups in terms of both performance and feature set.

L2’s are trying to solve for high performance with parallelized virtual machines, however, most of these architectures were intended for monolithic L1s, and fail to address the evolving demands of the modular, rollup-centric reality, of the Ethereum ecosystem.

Force-fitting L1 architectures into a rollup setup forces developers to navigate compromises in design, limiting performance, adoption, and ultimately, Ethereum's long-term vision for a globally decentralized network. Furthermore, high throughput alone is not enough to compete with Alt-L1s.

On the other hand, general-purpose architectures like RISC-V, WASM, MIPS, x86, etc., are also suboptimal as a blockchains job is fundamentally different from that of a generalized computer. Blockchains have evolved to do one thing: manage assets.

The mismatch of using general purpose or L1 architectures to solve blockchain and specifically rollup-related tasks has caused countless headaches for developers and resulted in poor user experience, fragmented tooling, and security issues.

To bridge the capability and performance gap, and add new features to the Ethereum ecosystem, we must rethink the execution architecture from the ground up. The solution? Design the right tool for the job - an architecture purpose-built to solve the unique problems of Ethereum rollups.

To enable the rollup-centric future set by the Ethereum Foundation,  a new type of architecture specifically geared towards the needs of Ethereum rollups, is required. This architecture will have to combine the strongest features of all previous blockchains, namely Bitcoin’s UTXO model, Solana’s parallelization, Ethereum’s security, Move’s asset-oriented design, and Cosmos’s interoperability and VM customization.

Fuel is designed to incorporate all of these features along with state-minimized execution to create a package purpose-built for Ethereum rollups.

What is a Rollup Operating System?

Fuel is an operating system purpose-built for Ethereum rollups.

Blockchains are social systems built to create and distribute assets, versus resource-constrained computing systems. As blockchain systems evolved, Ethereum rollups reign supreme in terms of TVL and user activity, and have quickly become the design of choice for chain builders.

Today, Ethereum acts as the hardware on which everything is built, and execution environments like Fuel, and other VMs act as the software.

Fuel is a feature-complete blockchain software, purpose-built to power Ethereum rollups. This is a fundamentally new approach to scaling Ethereum that offers architecture optimized specifically for rollups - unlike existing Layer-2 architectures, which most were designed for either arbitrary (general purpose) execution or Layer-1s.

Built to be customizable, Fuel allows any chain builder to deploy highly scalable rollups and app chains to solve any type of use case. Fuel consists of the following main components:

  • FuelVM.

    • The FuelVM sits at the heart of Fuel. All core features of Fuel, like parallelization, state minimization, and customizability, stem from the VM.
  • Sway.

    • Sway is a domain-specific language purpose-built for blockchains. It combines the best features of Solidity and Rust to enable developers to ship high-performance code easily.
  • Forc Toolchain.

    • The Forc toolchain allows developers to easily build and deploy dApps on Fuel chains.

Why Fuel?

Fuel offers an unprecedented combination of performance, interoperability, and sustainability for rollups, customizability and security for developers, and a seamless experience for users.

Fuel allows rollups to solve for PSI (parallelization, state minimized execution, interoperability). Powered by the FuelVM, Fuel aims to expand Ethereum’s capability set without compromising security or decentralization:

  • Parallelized - for performance

    • By executing transactions in parallel, Fuel can scale to users' increasing demand for transaction bandwidth while ensuring a high quality user experience.
  • State Minimized - for sustainability

    • Increased traffic on blockchains leads to growth in the state of the blockchain. Large state also places higher demands on node hardware leading to reduced decentralization. Fuel’s UTXO-based design minimizes state when executing transactions thereby preserving decentralization.
  • Interoperable - for a world of rollups

    • Fuel allows chains to introspect each other and thereby gather details from each chain at the block level. This enables Fuel chains to interoperate seamlessly with each other safely and securely.
  • Customizable - for app chains

    • Built to be highly customizable, Fuel also allows a chain builder to deploy highly scalable app chains to solve any type of use case.
  • User Friendly - for any asset & any wallet

    • Fuel supports native account abstraction and multiple signature schemes, which allow any wallet from any blockchain to connect to the network.

Fuel The Future

In the coming weeks, the Fuel team will share more details on Fuel’s unique architecture, product roadmap, and launch plans.

We also want to thank our dedicated community of builders and enthusiasts. You have waited patiently. Now, get ready for a modular leap in Ethereum rollup design.

More details are available on our website:

Subscribe to Fuel Labs
Receive the latest updates directly to your inbox.
Mint this entry as an NFT to add it to your collection.
This entry has been permanently stored onchain and signed by its creator.