This article covers Lightning's growth and tendencies since the launch of the Lightning Network mainnet in 2018.
This blog post is an extract from our latest report: “The State of Lightning”.
In its nearly three-year history, the Lightning Network has grown to hold a bitcoin capacity of almost 3,000 BTC, with about 17,000 nodes operating on the network and 73,700 unique channels connecting nodes from across the globe. As of late September 2021, the public bitcoin capacity on lightning equals more than $120 million, with users across the world finding value in the option to conduct near-instant small payments at very negligible fees.
Lightning Network: BTC Capacity
The Lightning Network has seen two distinct phases of growth. We will cover these periods in detail in the next paragraphs. The first growth phase began shortly after the launch of Lightning's mainnet and can be categorized as a very experimental phase.