Aleph Zero

Time factors

Protocol timeHuman readable time

Protocol time 1


1 second

Protocol time 2

Era (= 86,400 blocks)

1 day

First reward delay

1 era

1 day

Reward frequency

At the end of every era

1 day

Unbonding period

14 days

14 days


Must know before staking

Minimum stake amount


2,000 AZERO to directly delegate 10 AZERO to join a nomination pool

Partial stake changes

Partial reward withdrawal



Stakers have the option to automatically add rewards to their staking balance or to withdraw immediately.





  • Delegating is called nominating on Polkadot.

  • Nominator caps. Only the top 1,024 nominators of each validator can receive rewards for an era.

  • Nomination pools. Nomination pools let stakers pool their stake into one pool entity that can then nominate validators.

    • There can only be a maximum of 128 nomination pools.

  • Changing validators. Stakers who have directly nominated a validator can switch their selected validator instantly. Stakers who have joined a nomination pool will need to wait 14 days to leave and select a new nomination pool.

Advanced topics


  • Rewards come from newly issued tokens.

    • Fixed number of tokens issued. 30 million new tokens are issued each year. 10% goes to the ecosystem fund while the rest is distributed to stakers.

  • Factors that impact realized rewards.

    • Validator uptime. If a validator’s uptime is lower than 90%, the validator and its delegators will receive less rewards.

    • Commissions.


  • Penalties. If a validator is offline for at least 45 minutes in a single day, the validator will be kicked out of the active set and will only be able to join after 10 days.


Total validator cap

Validator requirements

25,000 AZERO

  • Validators cannot set a commission rate lower than 2%.


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