- Cardano Epoch
- Staking Timeline
- Subsequent Rewards
Cardano Blockchain operates on the Ouroboros Praos protocol, which divides time into epochs. Each epoch consists of several slots, where each slot lasts for one second. There's 432,000 slots in a Cardano Epoch, which means each epoch is 5 days long (432,000 / 60 / 60 / 24 = 5 ).
We can break down the staking process into four steps:
Snapshots are taken at the start of every epoch and is used to calculate the active stake. Note that a snapshot taken on any particular epoch will be used for the next epoch. In this case, the snapshot taken on the epoch after our first delegation (epoch 100) is used on epoch 101.
All snapshots taken are used for the next epoch!
In epoch 101, the snapshot taken is used to determine the rewards for the stake pool. A snapshot is also taken on epoch 101, which would be used for epoch 102. If you feel confused, remember that a snapshot will be taken at the start of every epoch and used for the next.
In epoch 102, our rewards from the snapshot usage are being calculated! Our snapshot taken on epoch 101 is also being used. As mentioned previously, a snapshot is also being taken to be used for epoch 103!
In epoch 103, we're finally paid for the snapshot taken from epoch 100! We've waited a good fifteen days ( each epoch being five days)! If you had delegated at the start of epoch 99, that would be TWENTY DAYS of wait! This is why there's a 15-20 day wait before you receive your rewards after your first delegation.
From epoch 103, we can observe the four events that go on every epoch:
Our rewards from two epochs ago are being distributed
The snapshot taken from the previous epoch is being used
The rewards of the prior epoch are being calculated
A snapshot is being taken to be used for the next epoch
What this means is after our first delegation, our subsequent rewards will be received every five days (1 epoch)!
You will receive your first staking rewards 15 - 20 days after your first delegation. Subsequent rewards will be received every 5 days.