Adding Optimism to your centralized exchange

# Connecting to Optimism

You connect to Optimism the same way you do to Ethereum, by connecting to a JSON RPC endpoint. However, the currently supported fork for Optimism is Berlin (opens new window), not London (opens new window), so EIP-1559 transactions are not supported yet.

# Endpoints

Click here for the Optimism endpoints. You can choose between our public endpoints, which are rate limited, and endpoints from infrastructure providers. Given rate throughput limits, we recommend using a private rpc provider like Alchemy (opens new window) for both mainnet and testnet use cases.

# ETH balance

In Optimism the ETH balance of an account is not stored as part of the account's state, but as an ERC-20 balance at address 0xDeadDeAddeAddEAddeadDEaDDEAdDeaDDeAD0000 (opens new window). You can still access it using the standard APIs.

# Token addresses

The ERC-20 contract address for a token on Optimism may be different from the address for the same token on Ethereum. The list of tokens and their addresses is here (opens new window).

For example, looking at the SNX token, we get these addresses:

ChainID Network Address
1 Ethereum 0xc011a73ee8576fb46f5e1c5751ca3b9fe0af2a6f
10 Optimism 0x8700daec35af8ff88c16bdf0418774cb3d7599b4
42 Kovan (test network) 0xc011a73ee8576fb46f5e1c5751ca3b9fe0af2a6f
69 Optimistic Kovan (test network) 0x0064A673267696049938AA47595dD0B3C2e705A1

To get the total SNX balance of a user that uses Optimism you need to:

  1. Connect to a standard Ethereum endpoint and send a balanceOf query to address 0xc011a73ee8576fb46f5e1c5751ca3b9fe0af2a6f.
  2. Connect to an Optimism endpoint and send a balanceOf query to address 0x8700daec35af8ff88c16bdf0418774cb3d7599b4.

# Deposits and withdrawals within Optimism

The ERC-20 contracts on Optimism function the same way they do on Ethereum, so you can use your existing code for withdrawals and deposits. Just connect to an Optimism endpoint.

# Transaction fees

Most of the cost of an Optimism transaction is not the gas consumed by the transaction itself (which is priced in most cases at 0.001 gwei), but the cost of writing the transaction in Ethereum. That cost is deducted automatically from the user's balance on Optimism. If you charge your users the cost of withdrawals, you have to account for it.

You can read more about this subject here. The relevant code sample is here.

# Deposits and withdrawals across chains

As a centralized exchange, there will be times that withdrawals of ETH or an ERC-20 token on either Optimism or Ethereum exceed deposits and you need to transfer assets. To do that you use a bridge or a gateway. We have a standard gateway (opens new window) that receives assets on L1 (Ethereum mainnet), and mints the equivalent asset on Optimism. When a user wants to withdraw the assets back to L1, the bridge burns the asset on L2 and releases it to the user on L1. If you want to use this gateway automatically, follow this tutorial (opens new window).

Note that while L1 to L2 transactions typically take minutes, L2 to L1 transaction on the gateway require a seven day challenge period (opens new window).

Alternatively, you can use a third party bridge (opens new window). These bridges usually rely on liquidity pools to allow for faster withdrawals and support multiple L2 chains. However, their token selection might be more limited and they may not be as decentralized as our gateway.

When an ERC-20 token does not have an Optimism equivalent you can create one. If there is no need for custom business logic, you can follow the steps in this tutorial (opens new window). If you need to implement some kind of custom logic, see this tutorial (opens new window).

# Audit reports