Aurora DeFi Ecosystem Overview — August 2022

Aurora is a layer 2 blockchain that runs on the NEAR Protocol. The user experience is instantly familiar to Ethereum, Fantom, and Avalanche users as it employs Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) technology. Like other L2’s, Aurora has high throughput, is scalable, and has low transaction fees. All the ingredients are here to make Aurora one of the next DeFi hubs. If you are going cross-chain, it should undoubtedly be on your list of ecosystems to explore. In this article, we will look at some of the most popular projects on Aurora so you’ll know where to start your adventure.

If you are looking to onboard to Aurora, check out my previous article.

Wallets

To get started on Aurora, you are going to need a wallet. If your wallet supports Ethereum, Fantom, or Avalanche, there is a good chance it supports Aurora too. Popular wallets such as MetaMask, Trust Wallet, and Ledger are all supported. You will need to add the Aurora Mainnet before you get started. The easiest way to do this is to go to Chainlist to connect your wallet.

Bridges

If you want to bring your assets over to Aurora from another blockchain, you will have to use a bridge. There are several options for users here, the most prominent being the Rainbow Bridge. Here you can seamlessly transfer assets to Aurora and back from the Ethereum and NEAR networks. The Rainbow Bridge is trustless, permissionless, decentralized, and ready to adapt to future protocol changes. Other options include Synapse Protocol and Multichain.

Block Explorer

EtherScan is now integrated into the Aurora chain, bringing the most popular explorer to its users and developers. It is called AuroraScan and leverages EtherScan’s comprehensive feature set and proven reliability. Through AuroraScan, users and developers can access developer tools and network statistics that provide extended insights into Aurora’s EVM.

Decentralized Exchange

Looking to trade assets or earn rewards by providing liquidity? There are a few DEXs including DODO, Curve and soon SushiSwap although the premiere DEX on Aurora is Trisolaris

Trisolaris

Trisolaris is the number one DEX on Aurora with a simple and intuitive UI, high-speed trading and low fees. It allows users to easily swap from one token to another, similar to UniSwap or SpookySwap. 

TRI is the governance token for the protocol with a total supply is 500,000,000, which will be emitted over 36 months. 70% has been allocated to community & liquidity incentives, 15% to treasury, and 15% for current and future team members.

Liquidity providers can earn fees by depositing their assets onto the platform. Trading fees are currently 0.3% with 0.25% paid to liquidity providers and 0.05% paid to the TRI token farm. Liquidity providers can deposit their LP tokens into one of the 23 farms to earn extra yield paid in TRI tokens.

TRI holders can stake their TRI on the platform to receive pTRI and earn rewards paid in USD TLP which is a 3pool of USN, USDT & USDC. The current APR is 18%. Next on their roadmap is the development of governance infrastructure, introduction of a stable swap DEX and vexTRI which will allow for TRI locking and voting power.

Lending Protocols

When it comes to lending protocols, Aurora offers several options for leveraging assets. You can supply assets to earn interest, put assets up for collateral, borrow, and leverage long or short assets. The two major lending protocols on Aurora are Bastion and Aurigami.

Bastion

Website: https://app.bastionprotocol.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BastionProtocol

Docs: https://bastionprotocol.gitbook.io/official/

Current TVL: $105 million.

Bastion is a fork of Compound focused on capital efficiency, low slippage swaps, fast transactions, ultra-low fees, precise liquidations, and the UX benefits of NEAR. The lending platforms are broken down into four ‘realms’ which isolate assets that have similar risk tolerances:

  • The Main hub realm currently supports five blue chip tokens: NEAR, USDC, USDT, WBTC and ETH.
  • The Aurora Ecosystem realm supports 4 tokens: AURORA, USDC, TRI and BSTN.
  • The Staked NEAR Ecosystem realm supports 2 tokens: NEAR and stNEAR.
  • The Multichain realm supports 2 tokens: USDC and stNEAR.

BSTN is the protocol’s governance token and is used as an incentive to create borrow demand. Users can stake BSTN directly in the ‘Kingdom’ to earn NEAR and BSTN rewards. There is currently over 550 million BSTN staked.

Additionally, Bastion offers stable-swaps for low slippage trading between stable assets like stablecoins. The protocol was developed by a team of 5 data scientists & software engineers who have a history with Terraform Labs and Solana DeFi protocols. The contracts have been audited by Quantstam and Sentnl. Vesting and governance are currently under construction.

Aurigami

Website: https://www.aurigami.finance/ 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/aurigami_PLY 

Docs: https://docs.aurigami.finance 

Current TVL: $17 million

Aurigami is another lending platform similar to Bastion. It allows for over-collateralized loans. Unlike Bastion, there is no isolation of the different assets. It currently has support for USDC, STNEAR, USDT, ETH, WBTC, WNEAR, PLY, AURORA, USN & TRI. 

The governance token for the protocol is called PLY. As with BSTN, it is currently being used for incentives. The maximum supply is 10 billion, with 40% allocated to liquidity mining, 12.5% to the treasury, 5% to the initial exchange offering, 4% to exchange liquidity, 19.5% to strategic investors, and 19% to the team. The protocol has a highly incentivized pool on Trisolaris for the PLY/wNEAR pool.

Conclusion

If you already use an EVM chain such as Ethereum, Fantom, or Avalanche, using Aurora should be a familiar experience. Experienced users will enjoy a seamless transition as they can likely use their favorite wallet and bridging assets is painless with Rainbow Bridge. Trading assets is simple with Trisolaris and if you need a lending protocol, you can choose from Bastion and Aurigami. For being such a young ecosystem, Aurora is off to a great start and it is exciting to see what will come next. Watch this space.

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