Synapse is a universal interoperability protocol that enables secure cross-chain communication. Synapse connects blockchains by offering an extensible cross-chain messaging protocol that supports assets, smart contract calls, and more. By leveraging Synapse, blockchains can easily and securely interoperate with each other and developers can build truly cross-chain applications including cross-chain DEX, lending platforms, margining systems, derivatives markets, yield aggregators, and much more.
$SYN is the governance and utility token of Synapse Protocol. It is used as an incentive for liquidity providers, for voting for community governance decisions that impact smart contract upgrades or expenditures from the DAO treasury, and as the native token used for transaction fees on the Synapse network.
There is not a whole lot of information about the Synapse team, but in a March 2022 Twitter post, Max Bronstein announced that he would be joining the Synapse protocol core team as the COO. Bronstein has previously held positions at other crypto startups such as Coinbase and Dharma. Synapse has received funding from several investors such as Alameda Research, CMS Holdings, DeFiance Capital, Three Arrows Capital, and Mechanism Capital.
There are 6 types of fees on the Synapse protocol:
- Swap Fee: A fee charged when users want to swap assets between different blockchains that are connected to Synapse.
- Bridge Fee: Charged when users want to move assets from one blockchain that is not connected to Synapse, to another blockchain that is connected to Synapse.
- Admin Fee: Charged by the network in order to pay for the costs of maintaining and developing the protocol.
- Deposit Fee: Charged when users want to deposit assets into the network in order to be able to swap them.
- Withdrawal Fee: Charged when users want to withdraw assets from the network. The fees collected by the protocol will be used to pay for the costs of maintaining and developing the network, as well as to pay for the rewards given to validators.
- Validator Fee: Charged by the validators for their services in verifying and validating transactions on the network.
The Synapse Protocol is comprised of a messaging framework and an economically secure method to reach consensus on the validity of cross-chain transactions. Synapse provides an extensible set of smart contracts that can be deployed on any blockchain which developers can leverage to build truly native cross-chain applications. Synapse offers interoperability support between every blockchain implementation, be it monolithic base layers, roll-ups, or application-specific chains. Synapse currently supports the deepest set of cross-chain liquidity out of any of the other interoperability solutions.
Synapse as a base layer protocol has three main components:
- Generalized Cross-chain Communication
- Optimistic Security Model
- Synapse Bridge
With Synapse’s generalized messaging system, any arbitrary data can be sent across chains in a secure and seamless way. Applications no longer have to be separately deployed across multiple blockchains; they can be deployed on a single chain and communicate with other chains to create the exact same user experience from one central application layer. Generic message passing also includes smart contract calls, enabling smart contracts on different chains to easily interoperate with one another. Stated simply, Synapse’s generic messaging acts as a framework for universal blockchain composability.
Synapse’s optimistic verification is inspired by Celo’s Optics protocol.
Optimistic verification borrows from optimistic rollups in that transactions are assumed to be honest by default with a network of off-chain actors responsible for submitting fraud proofs during the course of an optimistic window to disallow any fraudulent transactions. This mechanism adds a significant layer of security to the network, making it far more costly for a bad actor to conduct an attack versus the existing M of N mechanism. Externally verified networks rely on an honest majority assumption whereas optimistic verification relies on a single honest verifier assumption. Optimistic verification just needs one honest guard to behave honestly for the system to remain secure.
The Synapse Bridge is the first user-facing product built on top of the cross-chain communication network. Synapse Bridge allows users to seamlessly swap on-chain assets across 15+ EVM and non-EVM blockchains in a safe and secure manner. The bridge supports two types of bridging:
- Canonical Token Bridging — bridging of wrapped assets across chains
- Liquidity-based Bridging — bridging of native assets across cross-chain stableswap pools
Synapse Bridge is also available for developers who want to integrate cross-chain asset swapping natively into their application. By leveraging the bridge, developers can build truly cross-chain DeFi applications including cross-chain DEX, lending platforms, margining systems, derivatives markets, yield aggregators, and much more. The cross-chain AMM gives users access to the deep liquidity, low fees, and minimal slippage.