# Bitcoin difficulty chart, Bitcoin difficulty prediction

## bitcoin difficulty chart

## What is bitcoin difficulty?

Bitcoin difficulty is an estimate about how difficult it is to mine (find) a fresh bitcoin block. Bitcoin mining has two main purposes. One is adding transactions to the bitcoin block chain. The other purpose is to create fresh bitcoins.

The total number of bitcoins that will everzwijn be mined is limited to 21 million. Moreover, the bitcoin protocol determines a time horizon overheen which the bitcoins will be created. This is done to limit the supply of bitcoins. **A fresh block is mined every Ten minutes**. The number of bitcoins ter one block is presently BTC 25 and is halved every 210,000 blocks or approximately every four years.

If everybody could lightly mine fresh bitcoins, inflation would be the result. **Bitcoin difficulty exists to ensure a limited bitcoin supply.** This does not mean there could be no inflation for bitcoin. Activities like bitcoin lending can increase the bitcoin money supply. But the main underlying driver of money supply remains the monetary base which is represented by the number of mined bitcoins. Therefore bitcoin difficulty is significant to maintain the bitcoin purchasing power.

Bitcoin mining gets more difficult with an enlargening computing power te the network. The protocol always makes sure the pre-defined trajectory of bitcoin creation is kept. The computing power is measured te hashes vanaf 2nd. To understand what that means, the process of mining needs to be explained ter further detail.

## Bitcoin mining overview

When a laptop mines bitcoins, it attempts to calculate a hash which is the block’s header. The hash starts with a certain number of zeros. The number of zeros is defined by the **target**. The target is a 256-bit number and is therefore enormously long. All bitcoin clients know the target.

It gets more difficult to mine bitcoins, the more leading zeros the hash has got. At the same time the rekentuig is more likely to find a block at a given bitcoin difficulty when it has more computing power.

This makes it crucial to optimize mining hardware. At today’s high bitcoin difficulty levels, almost all miners use so called **ASICs** (application-specific integrated circuits). Thesis are more efficient ter their energy consumption and have a higher chance to find a bitcoin block.

#### Mining is like playing a spel of probabilities

Mining resembles a spel where you **roll a dice** which comes back a hash. If the hash starts with a number of zeros that is smaller or equal to the number of zeros spil defined by the target, you have won a bitcoin block. If the number of zeros is larger, you have to roll the dice again.

The more dices are flipped at the same time, i.e. the more computers are mining, the higher is the probability to find a fresh block. The probability also increases if the computing power of a single machine is enhanced. It simply resembles throwing more dices at the same time.

#### Bitcoin mining pools are the way to go

Since mining difficulty is indeed high today, single miners are very zonderling. Most individuals join their computing power te so called mining pools.

To make sure that on average a fresh block is created every Ten minutes only, **the target needs to be adjusted frequently**. This is because every 2nd fresh mining equipments can be added to the network.

## Bitcoin difficulty explained

The bitcoin protocol determines the recalculation frequency of the target. This means the protocol also determines the bitcoin difficulty. A fresh recalculation takes place every time the number of Two,016 blocks have bot mined. If the targetted interval of Ten minutes vanaf block wasgoed realized, this takes two weeks. Every bitcoin client does the reacalculation on its own by simply comparing the actual time it took to mine Two,016 blocks with the two weeks it wasgoed *supposed* to take. **The target is modified by the percentage deviation from the targetted time**.

Two weeks are the omschrijving of 336 hours. So if for example Two,016 blocks were mined ter 13 days instead of 14 days, this is a deviation of 7%.

The concrete value for the bitcoin difficulty is derived from the target.

This means that bitcoin difficulty can also go down should the mining of blocks take longer than Two weeks. Ter December 2014 this actually happened for the very first time. Bitcoin is live since January 2009, so it took fairly a while.

Since the bitcoin difficulty went down te 2014 for the very first time, this didn’t toebijten very often again. Most of the time a decline te bitcoin difficulty is driven by a decreasing bitcoin price. A lower price makes bitcoin mining less profitable. This causes miners to turn their machines off which decreases the hash rate. A lower hash rate means on average it takes longer to mine fresh bitcoin blocks, hence the bitcoin difficulty needs to decrease.

## What is the bitcoin hash rate?

The formula to calculate the amount of time it takes on average to win a block is

average time te hours = difficulty * 2^32 / (Three,600 * hash rate vanaf 2nd)

Wij can solve this equation for the bitcoin difficulty, it comes back

difficulty = average time ter hours * (Trio,600 * hash rate vanaf 2nd) / 2^32

Wij can buttplug te Ten/60 for the average time te hours for an exemplary calculation. This is because Ten minutes is the time it should take until a fresh block is found by a miner. Let’s say the hash rate is at 1 tera hash vanaf 2nd (it wasgoed like that a long time ago). Then this is what our bitcoin difficulty calculation looks like:

difficulty = Ten/60 * (Trio,600 * 1 tera hash)

So this example calculation gives us a bitcoin difficulty of 600,000. The real difficulty has bot at this value approximately ter mid 2011.

## How is the bitcoin difficulty prediction calculated?

To predict the next difficulty, the bitcoin client

next retarget te days is an estimate when the current 2016 blocks will be mined

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