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sTokens in Symbiosis

The Symbiosis protocol leverages sTokens, a form of wrapped tokens, for seamless cross-chain operations. Discover more about sUSDT, sUSDC, sBUSD, and sWETH in this comprehensive document.

sToken Introduction

The Symbiosis protocol employs sTokens, which stand for synthetic or synthesized tokens. These tokens facilitate cross-chain operations. Despite their resemblance to wrapped tokens, we purposefully refrain from labeling them as such. This distinction ensures they are set apart from the myriad of wrapped tokens prevalent in the DeFi sector.
What is wrapped token?
If you would like to refresh your knowledge about wrapped tokens, here is some basic information.
Wrapped tokens play several crucial roles in the DeFi ecosystem. Since different blockchains have different technical specifications, not all tokens can interact with all platforms. Wrapping tokens allows them to be used on platforms where they couldn't be used otherwise.
A wrapped token in decentralized finance (DeFi) is a type of token that represents an asset hosted on the same or different blockchain. It's called "wrapped" because the original asset is put into a wrapper, or a different blockchain layer. The process of wrapping and unwrapping tokens is typically done through certain organizations or smart contracts, depending on the specific wrapped token.
For example, one of the most popular wrapped tokens is Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC). WBTC is a token on the Ethereum blockchain that represents Bitcoin. Each WBTC is backed 1:1 with a real Bitcoin. This allows Bitcoin to be used directly in Ethereum's ecosystem, enabling it to be utilized in Ethereum's DeFi applications, smart contracts, and DApps.
In order to assure the token's credibility, the equivalent amount of the underlying asset is usually locked in a smart contract or held by a custodian, which can be audited to confirm that each wrapped token is fully backed.

Choice of Tokens for Synthesis

While Symbiosis has the capability to take any token from one blockchain and mint a synthetic counterpart on another, the protocol primarily engages with a select group: namely stablecoins and WETH (Wrapped ETH).
Transit tokens: WETH and specific stablecoins can be seen as transit tokens in the Symbiosis protocol, since they are used to enable cross-chain operations within the protocol.
But why the focus on just stablecoins and WETH? The core objective of Symbiosis is to enable token exchanges across various blockchains. To fulfill this, the protocol prioritizes tokens that maintain consistent value and enjoy wide usage across all supported blockchains. The tokens that meet these criteria are stablecoins and ETH. Here are some restrictions though:
  • As direct interactions with ETH via smart contracts aren't possible, WETH (Wrapped ETH) is used.
  • In cases where multiple stablecoins are present on a blockchain, the Symbiosis protocol typically leans towards one, often opting for USDC, BUSD, or USDT, based on the specific blockchain.

sTokens usage

Stablecoins

Let's consider an example: we want to exchange USDC from Ethereum for BUSD on the BNB chain via the Symbiosis protocol.
The simplified algorithm of the bridging stablecoins is shown in Scheme 1 below.
Scheme 1. Mint-burn routing during a cross-chain operation performed via the Symbiosis protocol.
Thus, when sending 1 USDC on Ethereum, we would expect to receive 1 BUSD on the BNB chain in an ideal world without transaction fees or varying exchange rates. However, in reality, the amount received will likely be slightly less than the amount sent.

WETH

If we exchange WETH from Ethereum for WETH on Arbitrum, the bridging procedure will be slightly different: another pool on Boba BNB will be used (Scheme 2).
Scheme 2. Mint-burn routing during a cross-chain operation performed via the Symbiosis protocol.
Thus, when sending 1 WETH on Ethereum, we would expect to receive 1 WETH on Arbitrum in an ideal world without transaction fees or varying exchange rates. However, in reality, the amount received will likely be slightly less than the amount sent.
NB on BOBA BNB chain
Symbiosis uses Boba BNB as a service blockchain: the Symbiosis contracts with mint-burn logic and Symbiosis Octopools are located on that blockchain.
sTokens are used for technical purposes only, and end-users cannot trade sTokens, although they can receive sTokens when adding/removing liquidity to/from Symbiosis Octopool.
There is a user guide for Symbiosis WebApp on sTokens: Bridge with Symbiosis: sUSDC, sBUSD, sWETH

Supported Blockchains

The Symbiosis protocol supports the following blockchains:
  1. 1.
    Ethereum,
  2. 2.
    ZkSync Era,
  3. 3.
    Scroll,
  4. 4.
    Tron,
  5. 5.
    Linea,
  6. 6.
    Base,
  7. 7.
    Mantle,
  8. 8.
    Manta Pacific,
  9. 9.
    Arbitrum One,
  10. 10.
    Arbitrum Nova,
  11. 11.
    Optimism,
  12. 12.
    The BNB chain,
  13. 13.
    Polygon,
  14. 14.
    Polygon zkEVM,
  15. 15.
    Avalanche,
  16. 16.
    Boba Ethereum,
  17. 17.
    Boba BNB (Symbiosis host chain),
  18. 18.
    Telos,
  19. 19.
    KAVA EVM.
Scheme 2. Blockchains supported by Symbiosis.
All cross-chain operations run through Boba BNB: the Symbiosis service chain (S-Chain).

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