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Are Solana and Cardano Mined Together?

Is Solana mined along with Cardano

Cardano and Solana have become two of the most popular cryptocurrencies not named Bitcoin or Ethereum.

Unfortunately, this has led to a lot of confusion about the exact implementation of cryptocurrencies because, well, no one actually understands how they work. 

With that in mind, this article will cover some of the absolute basics about how both of these cryptocurrencies and how they are mined. And to answer the question in the title, neither Cardano nor Solana are mineable cryptocurrencies. Both of the cryptocurrencies use some form of the proof of stake consensus model to validate transactions on the blockchain. 

Proof of stake means that users lock cryptocurrency with the blockchain in order to validate transactions on the blockchain. If they make too many validation errors, then the deposit is taken and they are probably banned from validating. 

How to Mine (Stake) Cardano

Staking Cardano is a surprisingly easy process because it’s a native feature on all the official Cardano wallets. All that’s required is a paltry 5.5 ADA and you can stake. 

That’s about $25, which is much more affordable than if you want to stake Ethereum. 

This is a really good thing in proof of stake because it means more decentralization. 

It’s also possible to stake Cardano on a centralized exchange. More accurately, you lock your funds with the exchange and they give you slightly less money than you would have received if you staked it yourself. The exchange takes their cut. 

There’s a time and place for staking with a centralized exchange, but the minimum ADA requirement is so low and it’s so easy to stake with an official wallet that you really should just stake Cardano on your own. 

How to Mine (Stake) Solana

Solana also uses the proof of stake consensus model. However, it combines it with something called proof of history, which goes far beyond the scope of this article. 

The important thing to know about Solana is that it can’t be mined. Solana validates transactions using proof of stake. 

Anyway, staking is also a native option in Solana wallets. There are also no minimum requirements to stake because you choose the validator. 

It’s actually interesting because the validators all want more staking deposits as that means they are allocated more transactions, which means more money. 

The validators actually try to sell you on why you should stake with them!

It’s an interesting marketplace because of that. You should also choose a reliable validator otherwise you will lose your staked balance. 

It’s also possible to stake with Binance or FTX, but we don’t recommend that because you don’t get to choose the validator. Centralized exchanges will also take a cut of your staking rewards. 

Mining vs Staking Cryptocurrencies 

Mining and staking are two entirely different things that accomplish the same goal of rewarding those that secure the blockchain. 

Mining is used in the proof of work blockchains like Ethereum and Bitcoin. Again, the specifics are far beyond the scope of this article. The basics are that computers solve complicated cryptographic problems to ensure that the blockchain remains secure. 

The miners are incentivized to mine by receiving a reward for adding a block of transactions to the blockchain (ie. mining a block) and/or taking the transaction fees in that block. 

Ethereum miners are rewarded a set amount per block mined. Bitcoin miners, on the other hand, receive a set amount per block and all the transaction fees. 

Cryptocurrencies that rely on staking have a similar idea as those that rely on mining (proof of work), but the implementation is completely different. Proof of stake blockchains rely on validators staking cryptocurrency to the blockchain to gain the right to add blocks to the blockchain. The validators then receive a set reward for every block they add to the blockchain. 

If the validator attempts to make a fraudulent block, then it will be kicked off the blockchain and the staked funds will be seized. 

Both have advantages and disadvantages. Proof of work blockchains tend to have slower transaction speeds and higher transaction costs, but they are far more decentralized (on paper at least). 

Proof of stake blockchains generally has very fast transaction speeds and low (essentially free) transaction fees. Critics often bring up that proof of stake blockchains can have centralization issues, which is a valid concern. However, centralization with proof of stake will likely be solved at some point. 

That said, both consensus models have their place in cryptocurrency. Proof of work blockchains like Bitcoin will probably be used for transacting large sums of money in a secure way while proof of stake blockchains will be the home of DeFi. 

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