What is an Airnode?

An Airnode is a backend server infrastructure that supports the operation of decentralized applications and blockchain protocols. It provides a secure and scalable infrastructure for processing transactions, storing data, and running smart contracts. Airnodes are essential for ensuring the efficient and reliable operation of decentralized systems, as they help distribute the processing load and storage requirements across multiple nodes in a network.

An Airnode typically runs a full node, which means it holds a complete copy of the blockchain and can validate transactions and smart contracts. This makes it an important participant in the network consensus process, helping to maintain the integrity and security of the blockchain. Additionally, Airnodes can also provide APIs that enable developers to build and deploy decentralized applications, as well as data feeds that enable real-time monitoring of blockchain activity.

Airnodes play a crucial role in ensuring the security and reliability of decentralized systems, and they also provide a key infrastructure for enabling new innovations in the blockchain and decentralized technology space. By providing scalable, secure, and redundant infrastructure, Airnodes help to ensure that decentralized systems remain available and accessible to users, even in the face of network congestion or other challenges.

Simplified Explanation

An Airnode is like a really big computer that helps make sure everything runs smoothly for a game you play online with your friends. The game needs a lot of help from this computer to make sure that it works properly and that everyone can play the game at the same time without any issues. Just like how a big computer helps with the online game, an Airnode helps make sure everything runs smoothly with a digital currency like Bitcoin or Ethereum.

History of the Term "Airnode"

The term "airnodes" is a relatively recent addition to the lexicon of blockchain technology and the Internet of Things (IoT), emerging around the mid-2010s, though its precise origin remains unclear. The term is often used to describe nodes or devices within decentralized networks that contribute to the overall functionality and connectivity, possibly emphasizing wireless or airwave-based communication. As blockchain and IoT technologies continue to evolve, the term "airnodes" reflects the ongoing development of innovative concepts in the intersection of these fields.


Infura: Infura is a popular Airnode provider that offers a backend infrastructure for decentralized applications and blockchain protocols. It supports Ethereum, IPFS, and other popular blockchain networks, and it provides a scalable and secure infrastructure for processing transactions, storing data, and running smart contracts.

Nodesmith: Nodesmith is another Airnode provider that offers infrastructure for Ethereum and other blockchain networks. It provides real-time data feeds and APIs for decentralized applications, and it is designed to be highly scalable and secure, making it a popular choice for developers looking to build and deploy decentralized applications.

Alchemy: Alchemy is a comprehensive platform for building, testing, and deploying decentralized applications. It provides a secure and scalable Airnode infrastructure for Ethereum, as well as a range of tools and services for developers, including data feeds, real-time monitoring, and developer APIs. Alchemy is designed to be highly reliable and efficient, making it an ideal choice for developers who want to build and deploy scalable and secure decentralized applications.

  • Full Node: An implementation of a blockchain protocol.

  • Internet of Things: The network of physical devices, vehicles, buildings, and other objects that are embedded with sensors, software, and connectivity, which enables these objects to collect and exchange data.