Blockchain is a revolutionary technology that enables secure and decentralised record-keeping across a network of computers. It is a global, cloud-based digital ledger that records transactions in an immutable and tamper-proof manner. Blockchain maintains an endless and unchangeable history of data, allowing for transparent and accountable transactions. The technology uses digital signatures to record WHO sent data, timestamps to record WHEN data changes, and is capable of storing entire computer programs known as “smart contracts”. Once deployed on the blockchain, smart contracts can be executed automatically without any third-party involvement, and their rules cannot be altered by anyone other than their owner.
At its core, a blockchain is a distributed ledger that is maintained across multiple nodes in a peer-to-peer network. Each new node that joins the network receives a complete copy of the blockchain, and cryptographic algorithms ensure that all nodes have a synchronized and consistent version of the data. This allows for transparent and accountable record-keeping, as every transaction is recorded in a permanent and immutable way. The technology is based on a cryptographic consensus algorithm that ensures that all nodes in the network agree on the true state of the data, making it nearly impossible to hack or alter the information stored in the blockchain. To learn more about blockchain technology, you can visit the following links:
The ARXUM® Suite is the first turnkey solution for supply chain management that enables fully automated and 100% audit-proof processing of information across multiple companies. Built on a common backend, it offers plug-and-play modules for supply chain applications, including a web interface for managing the modules, pre-defined Smart Contracts per module for the execution of services/use cases, Connectivity Agent to connect IT infrastructure with the ARXUM® Suite, a user management system for managing users and roles (external identity provider connection possible), and access to a Block Explorer service for monitoring and verifying ARXUM® Suite transactions and smart contracts.
The Connectivity Agent is software that connects your on-premise or corporate cloud-based data sources, such as file systems, databases, ERP, and MES systems, to the ARXUM® Suite blockchain via REST API. It observes ARXUM® Suite modules and forwards requests made to Smart Contracts between your IT infrastructure and the ARXUM® Suite.
Smart Contracts are self-executing scripts programmed natively on a blockchain. They enforce conditions similar to “If… then…else” and execute arbitrary automation codes, enabling trustworthy transactions and agreements between different parties. All transactions are traceable, transparent, and irreversible as they are stored on the blockchain, while your own process and product data are never stored on the blockchain. Smart Contracts are stored on the blockchain, allowing a contract owner to have full traceability on all changes ever made.
The InterPlanetary File System (IPFS) is a distributed file system and protocol designed to enable the secure and efficient sharing and storage of data across a peer-to-peer network. It is organized much like a blockchain and is ideal for blockchain applications. IPFS assigns a unique hash to each piece of data that is stored on the network, making it easy to reference and retrieve the data even across different systems and networks. The concept of “reference by content” allows for efficient sharing and distribution of data without the need for a centralized server or authority. IPFS can also reduce the risk of data loss or corruption, as data is stored redundantly across multiple nodes on the network. To learn more about IPFS, you can visit the following links:
At ARXUM®, we do not store any of your product or production data on our blockchain infrastructure. The only data that is stored on our blockchain infrastructure is the necessary Smart Contracts, which includes the transactions that have been carried out. However, we do have the ability to extend on-chain data to your supply chain events by referencing the data that you securely store in your internal databases. This allows for a secure and efficient transfer of data without compromising the privacy and security of your sensitive information.
At present, ARXUM® utilizes the EOSIO blockchain technology in version 1.8.6 (as of June 2020), which is operational on ARXUM®’s private cloud infrastructure. Our team has augmented the EOS Blockchain with supplementary components essential in industrial supply chain applications, including user administration, a dedicated IPFS cluster, and a block explorer.
For more details on EOS Blockchain, please refer to the following sources:
The EOS blockchain can process up to 100,000 transactions per second, making it a scalable blockchain for large projects. However, this number is subject to daily development and is expected to increase.
ARXUM® leverages the highly scalable EOSIO technology stack and regularly adjusts its infrastructure to meet the changing demands of its clients. Thanks to its cloud-based infrastructure, scaling is fast and flexible, enabling ARXUM® to accommodate varying needs with ease. Whether it’s global geographic requirements, high transaction volumes, or complex smart contract code, ARXUM® can hyper-scale to meet any challenge, ensuring uninterrupted service delivery to our clients.
Rest assured that when you use the ARXUM® Transfer Module for inter-company data exchange, no other company will get direct access to your database. All data access requests are handled by the ARXUM® Transfer Module’s smart contract. The Connectivity Agent establishes a secure connection between your IT system and the ARXUM® Suite smart contracts. Requests for data access are not sent to your IT system but are instead handled by the smart contract, which ensures that only authorized parties can access the data. The requested data is transmitted via a separate secure channel, such as IPFS, to the requestor.
In fact, the ARXUM® Suite services do not necessarily need full access to your data for a successful transfer. Our priority is to ensure the confidentiality and integrity of your data throughout the entire data exchange process.
No, there is no need to open any firewall ports for external connections. All you need to do is allow the Connectivity Agent to access the ARXUM® blockchain network. The data transfer process always runs from internal to external, meaning external partners cannot directly access your databases. When external partners request data access, they must go through your ARXUM® smart contract. Once the defined rules are met, the Connectivity Agent will pull the data request from the smart contracts into your IT system.
Absolutely! While ARXUM® has its own IPFS cluster that supports various modules of the ARXUM® Suite, you can also integrate your own IPFS cluster if you prefer. We offer the option to create a custom IPFS cluster that can be managed by us or by you, depending on your needs.