Stakely Blog
March 15, 2023

What is Quicksilver? The Cosmos Liquid Staking Zone

March 15, 2023

Introducing Quicksilver, the interchain liquid staking zone of Cosmos

Quicksilver is a liquid staking protocol exclusive to Cosmos, allowing users to stake, vote, and participate in DeFi simultaneously. And all without the need to unbond your tokens from traditional native staking. Let's see what Quicksilver is and what features it wants to stand out with.

Features and advantages of the Quicksilver protocol

Although initially planned to launch as a consumer chain of Cosmos Hub along with the launch of Interchain Security, the Quicksilver team launched its mainnet as a sovereign Cosmos SDK network. One of the main features of Quicksilver is its commitment to interoperability through "interchain liquid staking", which allows liquid staking between chains and unites the different projects running on Cosmos.

The Quicksilver protocol has unique features that set it apart from other staking protocols. Below, we will highlight some of its main features and advantages!

1️⃣ Interoperability and decentralization

Quicksilver promotes decentralization by allowing users to delegate with all validators of each network, without restricting delegation to a specific set of validators. Additionally, the protocol supports any IBC-enabled chain that supports ICA.

2️⃣ Liquid staking zones

Users participating in the liquid staking zones integrated into Quicksilver receive qASSET tokens, such as qATOM in the case of ATOM, at a 1:1 ratio. Furthermore, liquid staking can be done in the Quicksilver protocol without going through unbonding periods on those chains that enable the Liquid Staking Module (LSM), developed by IqlusionInc. Although no blockchain has yet enabled LSM, Cosmos Hub plans to do so after approving the proposal that will bring Replicated Security to the ecosystem.

3️⃣ Decentralized governance: how Quicksilver empowers users

The protocol also features a Proxy Governance system that allows users to retain their voting power on any chain integrated into the Quicksilver Protocol. It is not implemented yet, but it will allow holders of tokenized qASSET assets (e.g., qATOM in the case of ATOM) to vote from the protocol on proposals in their native network. The protocol is responsible for validating the votes in Cosmos Hub, empowering users and promoting decentralized governance.

4️⃣ Incentives and participation rewards

Quicksilver Protocol distributes the revenues generated from the fees of staking rewards among QCK participants. This means that QCK delegators will also receive native tokens from those zones integrated into Quicksilver, in addition to the rewards they receive from their staking in QCK. These tokens will start with ATOM, STARS and REGEN, which are pioneers in the protocol, although this series of tokens will increase as the number of zones in Quicksilver increases.

Furthermore, the Participation Rewards program in Quicksilver offers additional incentives for those who choose to delegate with smaller validators and those who actively participate in the governance of the integrated chains. These Participation Rewards are QCK token emissions granted based on each epoch, aiming to encourage a more equitable distribution of assets among validators of an integrated chain. When assets are distributed more evenly among a chain's validators, the chain becomes less vulnerable to attacks and censorship.

5️⃣ Quicksilver innovations: Interchain Security

One of the interesting innovations of Quicksilver is the potential incorporation of Interchain Security into its protocol. The Quicksilver team considered transitioning to Interchain Security but decided to launch the network as a sovereign Cosmos-SDK chain first to avoid delays in their plans.

If it makes economic sense, the Quicksilver community will decide on the possible incorporation of the feature through governance when Interchain Security v3 is launched.

One of the aspects being considered is the distribution of Interchain Security rewards for qATOM holders. Currently, all ICS rewards are distributed to QCK stakers, but the team is working on a solution to allow users staking ATOM to claim ICS rewards as they are generated. This would provide an additional benefit for qATOM holders, enabling them to redeem their rewards for other coins obtained when staking regular ATOM, in addition to the existing benefits provided by Quicksilver.

This development showcases Quicksilver's commitment to enhancing the user experience and offering innovative solutions in the rapidly evolving world of decentralized finance.

Launch and first steps of Quicksilver Protocol

After an initial failed launch attempt in Q3 2022, the Quicksilver team continued working with validators on the Killer Queen Testnet to resolve errors. Once resolved, they continued with milestones following the roadmap:

  • On December 16th of the same year, the Genesis block was created, and the mainnet was launched.

  • Over 100 validators launched the network as Genesis validators (including Stakely).

  • The compensation process for Killer Queen Testnet participants who completed assigned tasks and had good performance was announced.

  • The Keplr wallet added the QCK token to its listing.

First proposal: The key event for Quicksilver

On December 22nd, the voting for Quicksilver's first proposal ended, in which the Quicksilver community would determine whether Quicksilver would integrate the cosmoshub-4 zone or not. The proposal was approved, and the Quicksilver team launched the protocol on December 23rd, taking the opportunity to invite the community to join a Discord call with Quicksilver co-founders Roea and Vish Modali to celebrate the launch.

The first zones to integrate into the Quicksilver protocol were Stargaze with its STARS token and Cosmos Hub with ATOM. In fact, Osmosis Frontier already has an incentivized pool with the qSTARS:STARS pair and another with the qATOM:ATOM pair. Of course, the goal is to increase the offering of incentivized pools that provide OSMO and even QCK as rewards.

What's next?

Quicksilver has its sights set on Juno Network and Osmosis. In fact, it will be able to add any Inter-Blockchain Communication-enabled network (IBC) to its protocol, a standard that provides a secure method of data exchange between two independent blockchains. Additionally, the network must support the Interchain Accounts Module (ICA), an implementation of the Cosmos SDK (from the ICS-27 protocol) that enables IBC-based cross-chain account management.

This module, together with LSM, is essential for allowing liquid staking in Quicksilver for delegated tokens without going through staking unbonding periods. The Quicksilver team has committed to working with other networks to integrate LSM in the near future, thus improving the interoperability and functionality of the platform.

The team behind Quicksilver: Ingenuity LTD

Ingenuity LTD is the company responsible for the development of Quicksilver. Its vision is to create innovative and decentralized financial software systems that enhance the Interchain ecosystem.

With Joe Bowman as CEO, Viswanadha Modali as CPO, and Roea Mortaki as COO, Ingenuity LTD aims to drive decentralized finance in the Cosmos ecosystem by maximizing liquidity and improving user experience without sacrificing network security and decentralization. In their GitHub profile, Ingenuity LTD details the development of their testnet, Killer Queen Testnet, as well as the construction of Quicksilver, audits, and other aspects.

QCK Tokenomics: Governance, Security, and Fee Payment

Quicksilver uses an adaptive tokenomics philosophy, which means it uses governance to grant voting power to the community regarding the distribution of the native QCK token. The team considers it important to adapt to market and ecosystem conditions rather than having rigid inflation and issuance schedules with predetermined allocations.


But, is QCK an inflationary token? Specifically, the maximum supply of QCK is 720 million QCK. There will be inflation, and it will be 65% during the first year, with a 25% annual decrease starting from the second year. However, Quicksilver puts this distribution in the hands of the community through governance, opening the door to changes through voting.

Uses of QCK

QCK has three main functions:

  • Governance
  • Security
  • Fee payment

The community plays an important role in Quicksilver's governance. Users who own QCK can make vital decisions, such as the inclusion of new zones, incentives for inclusion, changes in network parameters, and processes related to future updates.

In addition, the protocol uses QCK to pay network fees. These fees go to block producers as compensation for including transactions in a block and ensuring network security.

QCK token distribution

In the Genesis block of the first QCK issuance, 200 million tokens were generated and distributed as follows:

  • 102.7 million QCK for community incentives, such as airdrops and liquidity.
  • 40 million QCK for the Foundation, intended for future developments and grants.
  • 26.3 million QCK for investors, including potential future investments.
  • 21 million QCK for the development team, which includes Ingenuity LTD employees and future collaborators.
  • 10 million QCK as incentives for testnet participants.

In their Medium, Quicksilver Protocol explains more details about the QCK tokenomics. Check it out and see if this protocol aligns with your investment style!

Quicksilver Protocol competition: How it compares to other liquid staking options

Although the features of the Quicksilver protocol are very interesting, we cannot overlook that the Cosmos ecosystem already has other platforms offering similar services. In fact, you can take a look at our comparison of liquid staking protocols in Cosmos to see the main differences between projects like Stride, StaFi, Neutron, and, of course, Quicksilver. All of them offer similar and/or complementary offerings regarding liquid staking.

Quicksilver and the future of Cosmos

In summary, Quicksilver is a liquid staking platform that offers an innovative solution for token holders looking to gain more flexibility and liquidity without sacrificing their staking rewards. With its focus on decentralized governance and transparency, Quicksilver aligns perfectly with the vision of Cosmos Hub for an interconnected and collaborative economy. As part of the Cosmos ecosystem, Quicksilver is well-positioned to play a key role in the economic integration of the Interchain in the future.

If you're interested in learning more about Quicksilver and how to do liquid staking with Quicksilver, make sure to follow them closely on Twitter and stay up-to-date with the latest updates. And if you're looking for a reliable and easy-to-use liquid staking platform, don't hesitate to consider Quicksilver!

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Gloria Zulay


Introducing Quicksilver, the interchain liquid staking zone of Cosmos
Features and advantages of the Quicksilver protocol
Launch and first steps of Quicksilver Protocol
The team behind Quicksilver: Ingenuity LTD
QCK Tokenomics: Governance, Security, and Fee Payment
Uses of QCK
QCK token distribution
Quicksilver Protocol competition: How it compares to other liquid staking options
Quicksilver and the future of Cosmos

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