Lightning Network (LN), Bitcoin’s premier layer-two solution, has seen its node count reach new highs over the past 12 months while the number of channels is up 170% since January.
According to the Sept. 27 Week on-Chain report from on-chain analytics firm Glassnode, the number of Lightning Network nodes surged by 160 percent in September to a new high of 15,600. Only 6,000 LN nodes were operational by the end of August.
The number of channels on the LN, or connections between different nodes, has also reached a high of 73,000, corresponding to an average of 4.6 channels per node, according to the report. As of September 26, Bitcoinvisuals reported an average of 9.3 channels per node.
“This is around double the number of channels that were live through the period from 2019-20, with most of this growth occurring since May 2021.”
According to Glassnode, the Lightning Network’s total capacity has grown “explosively” this year. The measure refers to the total amount of BTC that the LN may send.
At present pricing, the network’s capacity is at an all-time high of 2,904 BTC ($123 million). The achievement represents a 170 percent growth in capacity since January, with around 22 percent (514 BTC) added to the network in September alone.
The average channel capacity, or the amount of BTC delivered per channel, is at 0.04 BTC (about $1,670), a new high for the network. Throughout 2019 and 2020, this is a 43 percent growth above the average channel size of 0.028 BTC.
The Lightning Network has lately made headlines as a result of Twitter’s integration of LN for tipping, as well as the network’s national roll-out across El Salvador amid the country’s embracing of digital assets.
In 2015, two researchers, Thaddeus Dryja and Joseph Poon, suggested the Lightning Network as a mechanism to move Bitcoin transactions off-chain to boost throughput and lower costs.