Riot Acquires Next-Gen Miners from MicroBT, Boosting Mining Capacity

Riot Platforms, Inc. (NASDAQ: RIOT), a prominent player in the Bitcoin mining and data center hosting industry, has made a groundbreaking move by entering into a long-term purchase agreement with MicroBT Electronics Technology Co., LTD. This landmark deal involves the acquisition of 33,280 state-of-the-art Bitcoin miners manufactured in the United States by MicroBT. The agreement also includes an option for Riot to purchase an additional 66,560 miners on the same terms.

Upon full deployment in 2024, the initial purchase of 33,280 miners is expected to increase Riot’s self-mining capacity to an impressive 20.1 exahashes per second (EH/s). The order consists of the M56S+ and M56S++ models, renowned for their high hash rates and energy efficiency. With a weighted average efficiency of 22.5 joules per terahash (J/TH), these miners are designed specifically for immersion cooling systems, perfectly suited for Riot’s Corsicana Facility.

Jason Les, CEO of Riot, expressed his enthusiasm for the partnership with MicroBT and the acquisition of these cutting-edge Bitcoin miners. He emphasized their power and efficiency, specifically designed for immersion cooling systems. Les added that the new miners would contribute an additional 7.6 EH/s to Riot’s self-mining capacity, further enhancing the company’s already strong fleet efficiency ahead of the upcoming Bitcoin halving.

Beyond the impact on Riot’s mining operations, the collaboration with MicroBT marks a significant milestone for the Bitcoin mining industry. By manufacturing the miners domestically, Riot and MicroBT are strengthening the United States’ supply chain and providing more options for domestically produced Bitcoin miners. MicroBT will manufacture these miners in Pittsburgh, PA, creating new employment opportunities and contributing to the local economy.

Riot’s expansion plans, coupled with the confidence displayed by MicroBT and other mining companies, highlight the positive outlook on Bitcoin’s future. This news follows Hut 8’s recent announcement of securing $50 million from Coinbase Credit to support growth initiatives and enhance financial flexibility. The continuous growth and investment in the mining sector demonstrate a strong belief in the long-term potential of Bitcoin.


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Intel To Present Low Voltage, Energy Efficient Bitcoin Mining Chip At Conference

This could be huge. Intel plans to enter the Bitcoin mining space with a cleverly marketed “ultra-low-voltage energy-efficient” ASIC chip. Considering that the chip shortage severely delayed the next generation of ASIC miners, this is tremendous. And, more importantly, it opens up the door for Bitcoin miners manufacturing in the USA. And in the rest of the Western world, even. 

Related Reading | Why Did China Ban Bitcoin Mining? Here Are The Seven Leading Theories

In December, Raja Koduri hinted at Intel’s intention to get into the Bitcoin mining space. Even though he’s the chief architect and senior vice president of Intel’s architecture, graphics and software division, no one expected Intel to deliver so soon. Details are scarce. There’s nothing on Intel’s official site. A quick search reveals that “Access to additional search results for “bonanza” is restricted.”

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However, we have the 411 on the project that goes by the code name “Bonanza Mine.”

What Do We Know About Intel ’s “Bonanza Mine”?

The product will be an “ultra-low-voltage energy-efficient Bitcoin mining ASIC.” According to Tom’s Hardware, the page that broke the news, Intel will reveal their new chip at:

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“The ISSCC conference is a yearly gathering of the best and brightest minds in the chip industry. This year, Intel has a presentation scheduled in the ‘Highlighted Chip Releases’ category to outline a new “Bonanza Mine” processor, a new chip described as an “ultra-low-voltage energy-efficient Bitcoin mining ASIC.”

Apparently, Intel has been developing the product since at least 2018, when they registered “a patent for a specialized processing system that uses an optimized SHA-256 datapath.”According to Tom’s Hardware, “Intel has a wealth of experience in hardware-assisted SHA-256 algorithms due to the use of these instructions in its CPU products.” 

A more recent indication of the company’s intentions came when the already mentioned Intel executive Raja Koduri “appeared on popular streamer Dr. Lupo’s show.” He told him point-blank”

“Being able to do much more efficient blockchain validation at a much lower cost, much lower power, is a pretty solvable problem. And you know, we are working on that, and at some point in time, hopefully not too far into the future, we will kinda share some interesting hardware for that.”

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Why Is This Development Important?

Until now, ASIC Bitcoin miners manufacturing is controlled by Bitmain and Microbt, with Canaan, Strongu, and Ebang handling a minority of the market. All of those companies are Chinese. The chips are all made in Taiwan and South Corea. This poses a centralization problem for the Bitcoin network that seemed unsolvable until Intel’s soft announcement.

Now, the open-source Bitcoin miner that Jack Dorsey’s Block is working on makes a lot more sense. Theoretically, the silicon chip is the only part of an ASIC machine that can’t be bought in a hardware store. With that problem solved, by no less than an industry leader with immense manufacturing power, the sky’s the limit. If this whole thing materializes, expect a huge leap forward in the further decentralization of Bitcoin mining. 

Also, Intel’s announcement certainly legitimizes Bitcoin mining as a business to watch for the next 100 years. As podcaster Anthony Pompliano said, “Bitcoin is a computer network. Every technology company will eventually plug themselves into it.” With this announcement, Bitcoin not only gets Intel’s seal of approval. The giant company has now skin in the game. 

Related Reading | Intel, Microsoft Took 10+ Years to See Gains, Crypto Investors in Good Position

To close this off, let’s quote Tom’s Hardware one more time:

“For now, it isn’t clear if Intel will release the Bonanza Mine chip as a product for the public or if it remains confined to a research project. However, given that the chip is in the “highlighted Chip Releases: Digital/ML” track and Koduri’s comments, it’s logical to expect that these chips will be offered to customers in the near future.”

So, everything we said is not a done deal just yet. It smells good, though.

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HIVE Buys 3,019 New Bitcoin Mining Rigs, Joins Foundry USA Pool

Bitcoin mining firm HIVE has announced a purchase of 3,019 rigs to increase its hash rate by 46%, and will be joining Foundry USA Pool.

Bitcoin mining company HIVE Blockchain has announced a purchase of 3,019 MicroBT WhatsMiner M30S mining rigs, with the ability to increase its hashing power by nearly 46%. The rigs are being purchased from Foundry Digital and are already onsite at HIVE’s facilities.

“We are pleased to be executing on a transaction that dramatically increases our mining capacity without any logistics delays,” said Frank Holmes, executive chairman of HIVE, in the announcement. “Our entry into a North American mining pool furthers our goal of increased transparency and accountability with our partners. Mining power is shifting from East to West, and we’re excited to be involved.”

With the purchase, HIVE is forming a partnership with Foundry that reaches further than the monetary contract. As part of the collaboration, the mining company will contribute part of its bitcoin hash power to Foundry USA Pool.

Mike Colyer, CEO of Foundry, also commented on the arrangement. He shared that he and his company are “excited to have HIVE as a partner for the Foundry USA Pool” as they continue playing their part in securing the Bitcoin network.

Once the 3,019 new rigs are fully deployed into HIVE’s operations, the company might enjoy a significant boost in hashing power capacity. Currently at around 566 petahashes per second (PH/s), per the announcement, it could climb to as high as 830 PH/s. If the company’s plans are realized, this hash power increase could give HIVE a top-15 hash rate capacity in the world in present terms. However, it is unclear how much of this hash rate could be directly attributed to HIVE, since part of its hash rate will be geared toward Foundry’s mining pool.

Furthermore, HIVE also shared how the new machinery will allow the company to increase its bitcoin reserves more quickly. The company, which recently received approval to list its common shares on the Nasdaq, has apparently adopted a HODL mentality with its mined BTC since the beginning of 2021. A trend appears to be forming among bitcoin miners, which are increasingly choosing to hold onto their BTC and resorting to strategies such as bitcoin-backed fiat currency loans to cover their operating expenses in the short term.


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Bitfarms set to acquire 48,000 new miners in 2022 despite chip shortage

One of the largest publicly traded Bitcoin mining operations in the world, Bitfarms, has undertaken to purchase 48,000 new miners over the next two years.

The Canadian mining company has sourced the equipment from Chinese supplier MicroBT in a bid to increase its hashing capacity by another 5 EH (exahashes) according to reports. Bitfarms was founded in 2017 and currently has a capacity of 1 EH. It has targeted a 200% increase by the end of 2021.

The hashing capacity is the amount of pure computing horsepower that can be dedicated to mining Bitcoin or cryptocurrencies.

The firm anticipates the initial shipment of hardware to take place on or before January 2022, with the final mining rigs expected to arrive in December 2022. It will increase its overall hashing capacity to a total of 8 EH over the next two years. Emiliano Grodzki, CEO of Bitfarms, stated it was getting harder to secure mining rigs:

“The supply of miners will be one of the greatest challenges in for the foreseeable future due to a

global shortage of wafers used to create semi-conductor chips which is a vital component in mining rigs.”

The report did not specify which units would be purchased but MicroBT’s flagship product is the “WhatsMiner M30S++” boasting 112 TH/s and retailing at $9,300. The company website currently reports all mining devices are sold out.

Over the past eight months, Bitfarms has acquired over 12,000 mining rigs from MicroBT, citing reliability and power efficiency as reasons for the purchases.

In December 2020, Bitfarms deployed 1,000 new Whatsminer M31S mining rigs and placed an order for an additional 3,000 Whatsminer M31S+ miners scheduled for delivery in late February 2021.

Bitfarms was the first Bitcoin mining company to complete its long-form prospectus with the Ontario Securities Commission and started trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange in July 2019. The company has five industrial scale facilities located in Quebec, all powered with hydroelectric energy.


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Blockstream Buys $25 Million Of Bitcoin Mining Hardware From MicroBT

Bitcoin infrastructure company Blockstream has announced a $25 million purchase of the latest Whatsminer bitcoin mining rigs from MicroBT to be run across Blockstream Mining’s facilities in North America.

Blockstream Mining was launched in 2019 with an intention of bringing more of the global hash rate to the West. The largest mining rig manufacturers and mining pools are headquartered in China, which some see as a dangerous geographic centralization of Bitcoin’s most critical industry. Today, Blockstream Mining offers colocation services for institutions interested in entering the space, maintaining facilities in Quebec and the State of Georgia.

“The WhatsMiner purchase cements Blockstream Mining’s position as one of the largest Bitcoin mining operations in North America,” Adam Back, the CEO of Blockstream, said in a release shared with Bitcoin Magazine. “With over 300 megawatts in capacity available and fast-growing demand from institutions looking to get involved in the Bitcoin gold rush, we’ll continue to grow aggressively throughout the year.”

According to the release, Blockstream led the testing of the Whatsminer M30S series outside of China, so this large order can be interpreted as a sign of confidence about its performance.

“Right now, there’s no better mining hardware on the market than MicroBT’s Whatsminer miners,” Samson Mow, Blockstream’s chief strategy officer, said in the release. “We’re excited to continue our relationship with MicroBT and this latest batch will provide our hosting clients with an extremely reliable foundation to contribute to the security of the Bitcoin network.”

See Also

With some of its highest hash rates ever, the Bitcoin mining industry has weathered a harsh 2020 and increasingly moved away from China.

A rise in the bitcoin price and growth of mining operations around the world has meant that mining rig manufacturers maintain months-long waiting lists for new equipment. But MicroBT’s partnership with financial services firm Foundry Digital means that North American mining groups Compute North and Hut 8 are poised to receive new Whatsminer M30S rigs soon as well.

$11.8 million in financing allowed Hut 8 to purchase 5,400 new Whatsminer M30S rigs, adding 475 petahashes per second to its mining capacity. It would stand to reason that Blocksteram’s $25 million purchase would yield it more than twice that, but the release did not include specifics about the number of rigs or hash rate increase it is expecting.


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Hut 8 Partners With Foundry Digital To Secure 475 PH/s In Bitcoin Mining Capacity

Hut 8 Mining Corp. has announced a partnership with financial services firm Foundry Digital to secure $11.8 million in financing, which it will put toward 5,400 new MicroBT Whatsminer M30S mining rigs, adding 475 petahashes per second (PH/s) to its mining capacity over the next six months. 

The financing is structured as a 12-month term with an annual interest rate of 16.5 percent.

In the recently-published announcement, Hut 8 CEO Jaime Leverton acknowledged that securing new mining equipment is a big challenge for everyone in the business right now.

“This partnership builds on Hut 8’s ongoing commitment to shareholders by mitigating supply constraints and reducing our capital expenditure with a proactive fleet management strategy,” said Leverton.

Once the new equipment is installed, the total hash power coming from Hut 8 (named after Hut 8 in London’s Bletchley Park, where Alan Turing broke the Nazi’s enigma code) is expected to rise from 825 PH/s before the agreement  to 1,300 PH/s. Hut 8 has two mining farms in Alberta, Canada, in Medicine Hat and Drumheller. Most of its energy supply comes from natural gas, which is often vented as a byproduct of oil production.

New York State-based Foundry Digital, a subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, partnered with MicroBT in September 2020 to secure access to its mining equipment. As a result, despite a worldwide shortage in new mining equipment that can include months-long waiting times, the parties involved are hopeful that the first of Hut 8’s new machines will arrive by the end of January.

North American Listing Is Good For Business

Hut 8 is one of only two Bitcoin companies and the only bitcoin mining company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) “senior board.” (Financial services firm Galaxy Digital is also listed on the TSX senior board).

Bitcoin mining company Bitfarms is listed on the Canadtian Venture Exchange (CVE), while NASDAQ lists Riot Blockchain, Marathon Patent Group and HIVE Blockchain Technologies.

See Also

With some of its highest hash rates ever, the Bitcoin mining industry has weathered a harsh 2020 and increasingly moved away from China.

Hut 8 cofounder and former CEO Andrew Kiguel told Bitcoin Magazine in a phone interview that going public had helped the company in securing capital funding, such as this recent partnership with Foundry.

“Hut 8 is well positioned to attract new investors as a result of its listing on the Toronto Stock Exchange, Canada’s largest senior exchange and that it has cleared the ability to file a prospectus with the Ontario Securities Commission,” Kiguel said. “Hut 8 was the first blockchain entity to obtain a listing on the senior exchange and to use a short-form prospectus to raise capital.”

CoinDesk reported that Hut 8 shares have gained over 190 percent in the past year, but are currently down over 40 percent from their peak near $8.50 in early January.  Foundry Digital also recently partnered with another mining leader, Compute North, to help them secure 14,000 new M30Ss through its partnership with MicroBT.


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