European cryptocurrency exchange veteran Bitstamp has just announced that it now supports the Bitcoin Lightning Network, allowing secure off-chain transactions with lower fees. The exchange provided details of its Lightning Node earlier today.

Bitstamp will follow the likes of Coingate and Zebpay in adding support for Bitcoin (BTC) micropayments solution.

Although not the first exchange to allow users to deposit and withdraw using Lightning payments, the firm is arguably the largest name to implement the technology to date, and the move should help to lessen the burden on the Bitcoin blockchain.

Full details of the Bitstamp’s Lightning Node can be found here.

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Lightning Network Keeps Growing

The Lightning Network allows users to open channels between one another in order to make low-cost payments off-chain that are eventually settled on the Bitcoin blockchain.

The user uploads BTC to a wallet that supports Lightning transactions and once connected to the node of the user they want to transact with (in this case Bitstamp), either party can then send and receive payments for a fraction of the cost of a regular, on-chain Bitcoin transaction.

Bitcoin’s Lightning Network is having a great year thus far. According to Bitcoin Visuals, the network has reached a total capacity of 944,000 Bitcoin (over $10 million) and there are more than 4,500 nodes connected at the time of writing. These figures, though impressive, are slightly down from the all-time high of over a million BTC witnessed earlier this year.

Bitstamp Rides the Lightning

The Lightning Network was also successfully showcased to the world earlier this year with a demonstration known as the ‘Lightning Torch.’ Various cryptocurrency proponents from the world of tech and beyond were involved in the event that raised money for charities helping the people of Venezuela deal with the economic crisis strangling the nation.

Bitstamp commented on its decision to support the micropayments technology on the page detailing its Lightning Node:

“At Bitstamp, we’re very excited about the Lightning Network. We believe this technology is the next step for Bitcoin and one of the payment systems of the future. If you’ve been struck by Lightning too, connect to our node and let’s grow the network together .”

Do you think Bitstamp’s Lightning Network payments feature will prove popular? We’d love to hear your thoughts below.