Ethereum Introduces EELS: A New Execution Layer Specification

Key Takeaways

* Ethereum unveils EELS, a Python-based reference implementation for its execution client.

* EELS aims to be a more programmer-friendly successor to the Yellow Paper.

* The project has been in development for over a year and is backed by ConsenSys’ Quilt team and the Ethereum Foundation.


Ethereum has publicly introduced the Ethereum Execution Layer Specification (EELS), a Python reference implementation designed to make the core components of an Ethereum execution client more readable and clear. Developed over more than a year, EELS is intended to be a “spiritual successor to the Yellow Paper” and is focused on “readability and clarity.”

Background and Context

The EELS project comes on the heels of significant upgrades to the Ethereum network, notably the Shapella upgrade. Shapella, which went live on April 12, 2023, followed “The Merge” and enabled validators to withdraw their stake from the Beacon Chain back to the execution layer. It also introduced new functionalities to both the execution and consensus layers. The Shapella upgrade was first tested on the Sepolia testnet and was a collaborative effort that combined changes to the execution layer (Shanghai), consensus layer (Capella), and the Engine API.

What is EELS?

EELS is an “execution layer reference implementation in Python” that is “up to date with mainnet.” It can “fill and execute state tests” and “follow mainnet.” The project aims to provide complete snapshots of the protocol at each fork, making it easier to follow than EIPs (Ethereum Improvement Proposals) and production clients, which often mix multiple forks in the same code path.

Technical Features

EELS is “just regular Python” and can be tested like any other Python library. It supports the entire “ethereum/tests” suite and also includes a selection of “pytest” tests. The project does not implement peer-to-peer networking and requires a production client to sync blocks.

Future Prospects

While EELS is still “a bit rough around the edges,” it aims to become the “default way to specify Core EIPs” and the “first place EIP authors go to prototype their proposals.” Those interested in contributing can join the “#specifications” channel or pick an issue from the project’s repository.


The introduction of EELS marks a significant step in Ethereum’s ongoing efforts to make its execution layer more accessible and understandable. By providing a Python-based, readable, and testable reference implementation, EELS aims to serve as a valuable resource for both developers and researchers in the Ethereum ecosystem.

Image source: Shutterstock


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ETH Price Surpasses $2,000 Despite New Supply After Shapella Update

The much anticipated Shapella update for Ethereum (ETH) has finally arrived, allowing staked ETH withdrawals for users who previously had no way to take back their funds after staking. While there were concerns of a potential dump due to a new supply of Ether hitting the markets, the price of ETH still managed to hit $2,000 and currently maintains the level at the time of writing.

According to crypto analytics firm Glassnode, only around 1% of staked ETH may hit the market after Shapella goes live. The firm expressed confidence that the newest update on the network will not have a “dramatic” effect on the price of Ether. Glassnode reported that only 253 depositors have signed up to withdraw their staked ETH positions.

After the hard fork was seamlessly executed on the Ethereum mainnet, a total of 12,859 ETH, worth almost $26 million at the time of writing, were unlocked in 4,333 withdrawals just within the first hour after withdrawals were enabled. This suggests that there is still a significant amount of staked ETH that is being held.

The community celebrated the new milestone with various sentiments. Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin said in a live stream that Ethereum is currently in a “really good place.” Buterin highlighted that there is a lot more to be done but those can be done at a slower pace.

Crypto exchanges have also expressed their support for ETH unstaking. Coinbase and BitGo have already enabled withdrawals on their exchange. Binance said that it will support withdrawals on April 19. Meanwhile, Kraken started withdrawing validators for United States users on April 11 and started processing as soon as the Shapella upgrade was implemented.

It is worth noting that the Shapella update is just one part of the larger Ethereum 2.0 upgrade, which aims to move the network from a proof-of-work to a proof-of-stake consensus mechanism. The upgrade is expected to bring significant improvements to the scalability, security, and energy efficiency of the network.

The successful execution of the Shapella update and the support from crypto exchanges suggest a positive outlook for the future of Ethereum. While the new supply of Ether hitting the markets may have initially caused concerns, the market seems to have absorbed it without a significant impact on the price of ETH. As the Ethereum 2.0 upgrade continues to roll out, it will be interesting to see how it affects the overall performance of the network and the price of ETH in the long term.


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