Astar is a parachain that connects the Polkadot ecosystem to all major Layer-1 blockchains, including Ethereum, Acala, and eventually Cosmos.
Astar allows developers to build dapps fast, cheap dapps by offering high TPS, low transaction costs, and faster finality. By being compatible with Polkadot, it also enables blockchain networks, like Ethereum and Bitcoin, to operate together seamlessly without having to use a centralized exchange.
The Astar API allows applications to connect to an Astar node that is part of the Astar network. Developers can interact with on-chain data and send different types of transactions to the network by utilizing the endpoints provided by the API. The API follows a JSON-RPC standard. JSON-RPC is a stateless, lightweight, remote procedure call (RPC) protocol encoded in JSON.
Explained in the Astar API Quickstart Guide.
Astar is a parachain of the Polkadot network. They operate pretty similarly to L2s on Ethereum.
In other words, parachains are project-specific blockchains that run parallel to the main Polkadot chain (or Relay Chain), and inherit the latter’s base features and security.
Yes! Astar allows developers to build dapps using EVM-compatible smart contracts. This means you can make full use of Ethereum developer tooling, libraries, and Solidity to build on Astar.
To add the Astar network to MetaMask, create an Astar app on Alchemy. To get a dedicated Astar RPC endpoint, add a new network to MetaMask, and enter the following details:
- Network Name: Astar
- New RPC URL: YOUR-ALCHEMY-APP-URL
- Chain ID: 592
- Currency Symbol: ASTR
- Block Explorer URL: https://blockscout.com/astar
You should use the Shibuya testnet for testing Astar applications. Shibuya is the testnet of Shiden (a sister chain of Astar), and Astar developers can use a Shibuya faucet to get test SBY tokens.
Alchemy does not support the Shibuya Testnet yet
Please note that Alchemy does not currently support the Shibuya testnet for Astar.
Simply sign up for Alchemy, click the “Apps” tab, “Create App”, and then you can start building your new app for either the Astar mainnet!
For bridging, use the Arthswap Bridge. When you connect your Metamask wallet, you will be able to send and receive tokens between Astar and Ethereum.
Alchemy’s overview on cross-chain bridges can further help you understand how bridging works and how these bridges allow chains to interact with each other.
Since Astar is EVM-compatible, developers can use many wallets on it. Some of the most popular wallets include Metamask, Ledger Nano X, and SafePal S1. We give details on many of these wallets in our Web3 wallet overview.
Astar uses the ASTR token for gas. Based on current market prices, developing on Astar is, on average, ten thousand times cheaper than on Ethereum. Check out the Astar gas tracker for current gas prices.
Arthswap is one of the most popular dapps on Astar that facilitates swapping, staking, and bridging.
Currently, there is over 500k people in the Astar community and $200 million has already been locked into the network.
To withdraw ETH from Astar, use the Arthswap Bridge. Select Astar *as the From chain, Ethereum as the To* chain, and ETH as the token.
Astar is compatible with the JSON-RPC API standard. The JSON-RPC API has the ability to power any blockchain interaction on Astar. In aggregate, this API suite allows users to read block/transaction data, query chain information, execute smart contracts, store data on-chain, etc. Developers and consumers alike interact with Astar’s base JSON-RPC APIs to communicate with its decentralized network of nodes.
When accessing the Astar network via a node provider, API services like Alchemy require an API key, which allows developers to monitor personal apps and access usage metrics.
While many development environments have a set of default shared API keys, they are often throttled during periods of high usage leading to slower response times and a higher likelihood of request failures.
For the best development experience, we recommend that you sign up for a free API key!
With a dedicated API key, developers are able to:
- access higher request throughput and increased concurrent requests
- query Enhanced APIs, gaining access to free archive data, logs, and higher-level API abstractions
- leverage individualized usage metrics
The Alchemy SDK, including the alchemy-web3 library, supports Astar.
In addition to the SDK, Alchemy will also offer Astar-compatible versions of:
Since Astar is EVM-compatible, it is possible to use Solidity and Vyper to build on the network. Alternatively, Astar also supports WASM-compatible smart contracts written with the Rust programming language.
You can find the list of all the methods Alchemy support for the Astar API on the Astar API Endpoints page.
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