On July 22, ConsenSys researcher Mikhail Kalinin created a pull request for EIP-3675 on Github. This step will initiate the process of upgrading the Ethereum network from the current Proof-of-Work consensus to Proof-of-Stake.
The specification for the EIP-3675 update clarifies that the Beacon Chain has been up and running since December 2020, with no glitches detected during that time period, so it's time to move on to the next phase as part of the ETH 2.0 update.
"The long period of running without failures demonstrates sustainability of the beacon chain system and witnesses its readiness to start driving and become a security provider for the Ethereum Mainnet."
EIP-3675 sets the stage for the so-called Merger of the Ethereum blockchain with the PoS consensus Beacon Chain. This will be discussed at the Ethereum Developers Meeting on July 23.
"Hard to overstate how valuable's @mkalinin2's work on The Merge has been, and it's finally being formalized in an EIP," tweeted ETH-developer Tim Beiko.
According to the official documentation, the current Ethereum mainnet will merge with the Beacon Chain. This is planned to happen before the deployment of sharding, but the merger is unlikely to be expected in 2021. Following the merger, the new mainnet will provide the ability to launch smart contracts by PoS consensus. It also imports the current state of the Ethereum blockchain with the history of all transactions to ensure a smooth transition to PoS.
Once the merger is complete, users who have deposited ETH on the Beacon Chain smart deposit contract will be able to withdraw the coins that are currently locked.