LN is a second layer protocol stacked on top of the Bitcoin blockchain. A key component of LN is to reduce the congestion of the Bitcoin blockchain by creating a network of bi-directional payment channels where payments can be routed through instead. You can learn more about LN here, or by watching this video:
There are some significant advantages to LN over the traditional on-chain Bitcoin blockchain:
- Transactions settle instantly.
- Transactions settle with very low fees.
- Increases the transaction throughput of Bitcoin to over 100,000 transactions/second.
With LN, you no longer have to pay on-chain miner fees associated with regular bitcoin transactions and will have confirmation that your payment was settled immediately.
Note: Lightning Network is not another digital currency - LN is a payment protocol built on top of the bitcoin blockchain, maintaining the same security/privacy that bitcoin’s 1st layer offers.