Avoiding Deadlocks in Payment Channel Networks

  • Shira WermanEmail author
  • Aviv Zohar
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 11025)


Payment transaction channels are one of the main proposed approaches to scaling cryptocurrency payment systems. Recent work by Malavolta et al. [7] has shown that the privacy of the protocol may conflict with its concurrent nature and may lead to deadlocks. In this paper we ask the natural question: can payments in routing networks be routed so as to avoid deadlocks altogether? Our results show that it is in general NP-complete to determine whether a deadlock-free routing exists in a given payment graph. On the other hand, Given some fixed routing, we propose another way to resolve the problem of deadlocks. We offer a modification of the protocols in lightning network and in Fulgor [7] that pre-locks edges in an order that guarantees progress, while still maintaining the protocol’s privacy requirements.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Hebrew University of JersualemJerusalemIsrael

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