Bitcoin Mining Difficulty Hits Record 72 Trillion Amid Hashrate Surge and $600M Spent on ASICs in December
December 25, 2023 | by stockcoin.net
Bitcoin mining difficulty has reached a record high, hitting 72 trillion, accompanied by a significant surge in hashrate and a substantial investment in ASICs. As of December 23, 2023, the mining difficulty rose by 6.98%, the most significant increase in nine months, making the discovery of block rewards more challenging than ever. Miners are now tasked with generating a hash value below the threshold of 72 trillion to mine a new block. Concurrently, the network’s hashrate achieved an all-time high, reaching 538 exahash per second (EH/s). Publicly listed mining companies have spent $600 million on new machinery in December and a total of $1.3 billion on ASIC acquisitions throughout the year.
Bitcoin’s Mining Difficulty Soars to Historic 72 Trillion
The ascent in mining difficulty signifies a considerable leap, climbing from 67.30 trillion to a strenuous 72.01 trillion. This metric of Bitcoin’s mining difficulty is defined by a specific target hash value that miners aspire to attain.
Essentially, with a difficulty level of 72 trillion, miners are tasked with generating a hash value beneath this threshold to successfully mine a new block. Post this 6.98% rise, it’s anticipated that the next difficulty adjustment will be around Jan. 5, 2024.
Bitcoin’s Mining Difficulty Defined by Target Hash Value
Bitcoin’s mining difficulty is a measure that determines the level of computational effort required to mine a new block on the Bitcoin blockchain. It is designed to ensure that new blocks are added to the blockchain at a consistent rate, approximately every 10 minutes. The difficulty level is adjusted every 2016 blocks, or approximately every two weeks, based on the total computing power of the network. The target hash value represents the maximum value that a hash must be below in order for a new block to be considered valid.
Next Difficulty Adjustment Expected on Jan. 5, 2024
With Bitcoin’s mining difficulty reaching a historic high of 72.01 trillion, the next difficulty adjustment is expected to occur on Jan. 5, 2024. This adjustment will reflect the increased mining difficulty and ensure that new blocks continue to be added to the blockchain at a consistent rate. Miners will need to adapt their mining strategies and allocate more computational power to meet the new difficulty level.
Bitcoin’s Hashrate Reaches All-Time High
Data from Luxor’s hashrateindex.com reveals that the seven-day moving average of Bitcoin’s hashrate has reached an all-time high of 538 exahash per second (EH/s). This record-breaking figure was achieved shortly after the network reported a historic peak of 527 EH/s on December 20. The hashrate represents the total computational power of the Bitcoin network and is a crucial factor in determining the network’s security and the speed at which new blocks are added to the blockchain.
Around 50 mining pools are contributing SHA256 hashrate to the BTC network, with Foundry USA at the forefront. Foundry USA commands 32.30% or 173.55 EH/s of the total hashrate, making it the largest contributing pool. Antpool follows closely behind, contributing 26.95% or 144.81 EH/s. Together, these two pools hold 59.25% of Bitcoin’s aggregate hashrate, indicating their significant influence on the network’s mining activities.
Foundry USA and Antpool Dominate Bitcoin’s Hashrate
Foundry USA and Antpool, two prominent mining pools, dominate Bitcoin’s hashrate. Foundry USA commands 32.30% or 173.55 EH/s of the total hashrate, making it the largest contributing pool. Antpool follows closely behind, contributing 26.95% or 144.81 EH/s. Collectively, these two pools hold 59.25% of Bitcoin’s aggregate hashrate over the preceding three days. This concentration of hashrate among a few pools raises concerns about centralization and potential vulnerabilities in the network’s security.
17,000 Blocks Remain Until Anticipated Halving Event
The halving event, which reduces the block reward for miners in half, is eagerly awaited by the Bitcoin community. As of now, just a little over 17,000 blocks remain until the anticipated halving event, projected to occur around the end of March or the beginning of April 2024. The halving event has historically had a significant impact on the price and mining dynamics of Bitcoin, as it reduces the rate at which new Bitcoins enter circulation.
Significant Expansion in Bitcoin Mining Operations
The surge in Bitcoin’s hashrate aligns with the significant expansion in Bitcoin mining operations. Throughout 2023, leading ASIC manufacturers unveiled their latest next-generation mining rigs. These new machines have been aggressively incorporated by mining entities into their operations, substantially boosting efficiency and increasing the overall hashrate of the network. The increased efficiency of mining operations improves the profitability of miners and contributes to the overall security and stability of the Bitcoin network.
Publicly Listed Mining Companies Spend $600 Million on ASICs in December
According to reports from the Financial Times, publicly listed mining companies have made notable investments in ASICs. In the month of December alone, these companies spent $600 million on new machinery to enhance their mining capabilities. The total investment in ASIC acquisitions over the year is estimated to be $1.3 billion, indicating a strong commitment to the mining industry and a belief in the future growth of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.
Share Your Thoughts on Bitcoin’s Mining Difficulty Surge
Bitcoin’s mining difficulty reaching a historic high of 72.01 trillion has sparked discussions and opinions within the cryptocurrency community. Share your thoughts and opinions about this significant milestone in the comments section below. The growing mining difficulty and hashrate indicate the increasing popularity and adoption of Bitcoin, but also raise questions about the sustainability and environmental impact of cryptocurrency mining. Engagement and dialogue on these topics are essential for a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities presented by Bitcoin mining.