Bitcoin costs at least $3,413.62 to mine.


*Based on the energy cost to create each coin. Learn more?


Why?

Bitcoin's price is a composition of intrinsic and extrinsic factors. Based on the energy cost it takes to create each coin, we can establish bounds for its value.

Our Methodology

40,419,150 TH/s

Blockchain

The global hash rate (in terahashes), block reward, and blocks per hour.

Blockchain

Global Hash Rate: 40,419,149.88 TH/s

Block Reward: 12.5 BTC

Blocks/hour: 6

18 TH/s

Mining

The best consumer mining rig's hash rate and energy consumption.

Mining

Device Name: Ebang Ebit E10

Hash Rate: 18 TH/s

Energy Consumption: 1.65 kW/h

$0.07 kW/h

Energy

The average industrial cost per kilowatt hour of electricity.

Energy

Energy Cost: $0.07 kW/h

The Math

Variables

Let the following be assigned:

ĥ = global hash rate (TH/s)

ĥm = individual miner's hash rate (TH/s)

em = individual miner's energy consumption (kWh)

c = energy cost (kWh USD)

β = blocks per hour

r = block reward (btc)


m = total number of simulated miners

cmb = energy cost per miner per block (USD)

v = bitcoin intrinsic value (USD)

Equations

First, find the total number of simulated miners m in the best case scenario (all using best combination of hash rate and energy consumption).

Second, find the energy cost per miner per block cmb in kilowatts-per-hour by dividing the energy consumption of an individual miner in kWh by the number of blocks found in an hour, and then multiplying the result by the constant cost of each kilowatt hour.

$$m = {ĥ \over ĥ_m}, c_{mb} = c{e_m \over β}$$

Finally, the lower bound on the intrinsic value of a coin's generation is the total system energy cost per block divided by the number of coins generated per block.

$$v = {m \times c_{mb} \over r}$$

Results

With 2,245,508 miners and an individual energy cost of $0.019 kW/h the system energy cost per block is $42,670. Since the current block reward is 12.5 BTC then the energy cost per coin is $3,413.62.

A more detailed description is available in this blog post: A Bitcoin Valuation Experiment.

Think of it Like

The energy cost to create a Bitcoin is akin to its “melt value” were it a piece of metal.

What's It Worth?

We can see how much of Bitcoin's price might be speculation.

3655

Market Value

3414

Intrinsic Value

241

Extrinsic Value

7

Speculation

Other Cryptocurrencies

Name Algorithm Hashrate Optimal Rig Energy Blocks/hr Min. Value Speculation
BitcoinSHA25640,419,150 TH/s18 TH/s @ 1.65 kW/h3.71 gW6$3,413.627%
EthereumEthash168 TH/s0.000192 TH/s @ 1.10 kW/h0.96 gW240$92.355%
LitecoinScrypt158 TH/s0.00058 TH/s @ 0.93 kW/h0.25 gW24$29.11-10%
Bitcoin Cash - ABCSHA2563,472,000 TH/s18 TH/s @ 1.65 kW/h0.32 gW6$293.23-183%
Bitcoin Cash - SVSHA2564,098,000 TH/s18 TH/s @ 1.65 kW/h0.38 gW6$346.10-251%