What is ThorChain (RUNE)?

Here’s a little deep dive into Thorchain – RUNE.

The ultimate Decentralised Cross-Chain infrastructure – @THORChain.

I will leave all the official links in the bottom of this post.


What is Thorchain RUNE?

The idea of THORChain was seeded by a Team in 2018 at the Binance Hackathon.

Their mission was to facilitate a Decentralised liquidity protocol and deplete the need of using Centralised Exchanges & other Third-Parties that aren’t entirely necessary.

THORchain has achieved rapid success. How did they do it and how does it work?

How does it work?

THORChain allows swapping for native assets between different blockchains, such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Binance Smart Chain & recently added, Cosmos $ATOM.

Most Cross-Chain protocols wrap their assets before swapping e.g. Wrapped Bitcoin $WBTC.

However, THORChain uses its native assets to perform ‘Asset Swaps’.

Asset Swaps are enabled by Liquidity Pools that are provided by the ‘Liquidity Providers’.

The liquidity providers lock TWO assets (E.g. $RUNE – $BTC in the liquidity pool and in turn, provide liquidity for traders who want to swap between the TWO assets and they pay a minuscule fee which goes BACK to the Providers of the Liquidity.

Any THORChain user can be a liquidity provider and swap assets. This is what makes THORChain permissionless. This is what DeFi is all about.

These pools are secured by networks of node operators, known as THORNodes. How do these nodes operate and why are they so important?



THORNodes are responsible for servicing the entire network and are made up of FOUR important elements:

  • Thornode – The service running the Blockchain.
  • Full Nodes – Each THORNode operator will run a Full Node for each Connected & Supported Blockchain E.g. Avalanche Node, Ethereum Node etc.
  • The BiFrost – This protocol acts as a connective layer between THORChain Network and other networks E.g. ETH Network.
  • The Gateway – Is the THORNode gateway proxy which obtains a single IP address for multiple deployments.

THORNodes are very expensive to set up and require bonding 1 million $RUNE tokens, therefore it doesn’t lie within everyone’s budget.

The big question is why do we need THORchain?


Usually, decentralised exchanges such as Uniswap, PancakeSwap or Trader Joe’s will use liquidity pools to allow users to swap cryptocurrencies. These protocols however can only facilitate trades/transactions on a single blockchain, e.g. swapping $ETH to $USDC on the Ethereum blockchain using Uniswap.

This is where THORChain kicks its competitors out of the water. They have built an AMM-based DEX on the Cosmos blockchain which has the technology to facilitate trades/swaps between different blockchains.

What blockchains are available on the THORchain protocol?



As recently stated above, THORChain is still making huge developments and partnerships with multiple blockchains, but currently, these are the existing blockchains:

  • Bitcoin – The number 1 Cryptocurrency & Blockchain in the world.
  • Ethereum – The number 1 Altcoin and most used Blockchain in the world.
  • BNB Chain – Originated from the best and most used CEX, Binance.
  • Cosmos – Home to every IBC-compatible protocol.
  • Dogechain – First Memecoin to create its own blockchain.
  • Avalanche – The most recent blockchain they connected with.

As we can see THORChain is compatible with most of the largest blockchains and will continue to do so as there are many blockchains still to be connected to. The more blockchains that join the list, the more the $RUNE token is used, but what utilities does the token have?


The native token that drives the entire ecosystem is $RUNE which has four major utilities:


The $RUNE token is always 50% part of a Liquidity Pool, for example – $RUNE – $ETH or $RUNE – $AVAX.


Governance on THORChain operates differently than other protocols and blockchains. The $RUNE token is used to govern:

  • Signalling Priority for Assets – This is where a list of queued-up tokens/assets are in line to create a Liquidity Pool within the THORChain ecosystem. The token/asset with the most $RUNE votes will be next to join the LPs.
  • Signalling Priority for Chains – This is where a list of queued-up blockchains are in line to integrate with the THORChain ecosystem. Also if a connected blockchain is empty, with no liquidity it will be delisted, immediately. The process of delisting is called the “Ragnarok”.


THORChain runs on the Proof-of-Bond (PoB) consensus mechanism which is completely different to the Proof-ofWork/Stake (PoW/PoS) mechanism. THORNodes will devote a bond which gives them voting rights and is used to underwrite assets. The underwriting process will prevent any nodes from trying to steal $RUNE or perform any malicious activity on the network.


$RUNE is used to pay any fees that may occur within the ecosystem. Also, it is used to reward node operators, liquidity providers and bonders!

How to buy $RUNE

The $RUNE token is available on the Cosmos, Ethereum and BNB Smart Chain as well as most of the largest centralised exchanges.

There are two main ways to buy $RUNE, but either way, you will always go through a centralised exchange (CEX). Here are the options:

Option 1- Centralised Exchange

The $RUNE token is one of the easiest obtainable cryptocurrencies to obtain via Centralised Exchange (CEX).

Here are some Centralised Exchanges we recommend for you to buy or trade the $RUNE token:

Option 2 – DeFi Wallet & Decentralised Exchange

To get started you will need a DeFi wallet and make sure to secure your seed phrase with a hardware wallet (Trezor):

If you are buying $RUNE through your DeFi wallet, we recommend using the BNB Smart Chain which requires $BNB tokens for gas fees. If you haven’t set up the BNB Chain, you can follow our Youtube tutorial down below. Here are the essential links:

You can also buy $RUNE on the Cosmos blockchain, using the Osmosis DEX as THORChain $RUNE is IBC-Enabled (Inter-Blockchain Communication). If you are interested then you can follow the steps using these videos:

  • Keplr Wallet Tutorial – Number 1 Cosmos Wallet – https://youtu.be/qjlQ6kqCWe4
  • Osmosis DEX Tutorial – Number 1 DEX on Cosmos – https://youtu.be/oNFG440RN8A


At the time of writing, $RUNE’s price is around $1.64+ with a market cap of $537m+. At its peak, May 19th 2021, $RUNE’s price was sitting at $20.87 and had a market cap of $4.8b+.

Even while the market is bearish, THORChain works harder to unite all the major chains!

We have written an article on THORSwap that is their very own multi-chain Decentralised Exchange (DEX) that utilises the power of THORChain and supports a variety of major blockchains and cryptocurrencies.

You can read the full article here – (LINK)


THORChain Twitter – @THORChain

THORChain Website – http://thorchain.com

THORChain LinkTree – http://linktr.ee/multichain



Thanks a lot for reading this guide! Hope you have enjoyed/learned something from it! Be sure to have a look at the other guides as well by clicking here! And don’t forget to follow us on Twitter: @AltCryptoGems.

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact us!