โœ Terra 101

Learn how Terra works and what makes it special

What is Terra?

Terra is a blockchain protocol that supports stable programmable payments and open financial infrastructure development. It is supported by a basket of fiat-pegged, seigniorage share style stablecoins which are algorithmically stabilized by its native cryptoasset, Luna.

One part of Terraโ€™s value contributions, payments, in essence replaces the complicated payments value chain, including credit card networks, banks, and payment gateways with a single blockchain layer. In concert with the efficiencies that Terra has provided payment channels for both merchants and consumers, it continues to steadily provide infrastructural improvements and tools for the foundations of laying down a credibly neutral, distributed, and radically transparent ecosystem.

Why build on Terra?

Robust consensus and fast block finality

Terra is powered by Tendermint BFT consensus, using a dPoS-like scheme driven by a set of 100 top validators. This efficient consensus model enables batches of transactions to occur in only 6 seconds (only a fraction of the time it takes for Bitcoin and Ethereum).

Ready for DeFi applications

With fundamental infrastructure such as price oracles, on-chain swaps, stablecoin assets in a variety of denominations, community governance and automated monetary and fiscal policy, the Terra blockchain acts as its own autonomous sovereign economy driven by its users, and provides all the necessary incentive mechanics and modular plumbing to power modern DeFi smart contracts.

Growing, active user base with real-world usage

With over 1.5 million total users and a highly active user base from a variety of integrations (like Terra-powered payment gateways such as CHAI and MemePay), the Terra economy is a thriving new home for the future of innovative DeFi products. And unlike many other stablecoin protocols, Terra stablecoins are directly integrated in payments solutions where they are used everyday purchases such as groceries, movie tickets, taxis, and more.

What can you build on Terra?

Terra aims to make money easier to spend and more attractive to save. Build financial applications that are easily accessible to the masses. This includes popular decentralized finance applications such as:

  • Algorithmic money markets (AMMs)

  • Digital banks

  • Yield-generating wallets

  • Decentralized exchanges (DEXs)

  • Borrowing & lending platforms

and more!

Network Specifications

Transaction Fees

Gas is a fee that is added on to each transaction to avoid spamming. Validators set minimum gas prices and reject transactions that have implied gas prices above this threshold. At the end of every block, the compute fees are disbursed to the participating validators pro-rata to stake.

All Terra transactions pay a small fee to miners. Fees default to 0.1% and are capped at 1%, meaning that transacting with Terra in e-commerce will be much cheaper than transacting with traditional payment options such as credit cards.

Transaction Speed & Finality

Terra is secured by Tendermint consensus performed over the 100 top validators by bonded Luna stake. This ensures block finality, and block times generally fall in between 5 and 6 seconds. As such, the Terra blockchain is able to reach hundreds of transactions per second.

Languages supported

The Terra SDKs provide an easy way to programmatically interact with a Terra node with popular programming languages to develop applications. Currently, there are SDKs in Python 3 and JavaScript, with support for other runtimes coming soon.

EVM compatibility

Terra is not currently compatible with the EVM.

Role of the LUNA token

Luna is the native staking token recognized by the Terra protocol. Through its role in collateralizing the mechanisms that secure the price-stability of Terra stablecoins and modulate the incentives of validators, Luna serves as a foundational asset for the entire Terra network and ecosystem