FAQs

What is Orca?

Orca is the easiest place to exchange cryptocurrency on the Solana blockchain. On Orca, you can exchange tokens more cheaply, quickly, and confidently (thanks to our Fair Price Indicator) than any DEX on Ethereum. Additionally, you can provide liquidity to a trading pool to earn trading fees.

What is the difference between an AMM and a traditional exchange?

There are two major types of cryptocurrency exchanges: traditional orderbook exchanges and automated market maker (AMM) exchanges. In the former, the orderbook matches users looking to buy with users looking to sell similar amounts of tokens. In the latter, users trade with a pool of tokens, rather than directly with other users. For blockchain applications, we believe that AMM-based exchanges are the superior approach because of their simplicity and composability.

Why Solana?

Of the solutions competing to scale the blockchain ecosystem, Solana's performance stands out: 50,000 transactions per second, 400ms block times, and $0.01 average transaction fees. What’s more, we've been continually impressed by the value, vision, and engineering chops of the Solana team. For these reasons, we believe that Solana is the best choice to support the next generation of DeFi apps.

Do you have a governance token?

The ORCA governance token was launched on Monday, August 9, 2021. Details on the ORCA token can be found on the Tokenomics page.
ORCA token mint address: orcaEKTdK7LKz57vaAYr9QeNsVEPfiu6QeMU1kektZE (Solana Explorer)

Is there an airdrop?

The ORCA token was retroactively airdropped to liquidity providers and traders on Monday, August 9, 2021. Read more about Orca's tokenomics and airdrop details on the Tokenomics page.
Our guppy and whale collectibles have already been distributed. If you are lucky enough to have earned one, you can view it here.
Missed out? Don't worry - the next addition to our marine ecosystem will be along soon!
We don't always publish our criteria for earning collectibles ahead of time, however we are keen to reward our community, so get involved, use our platform and follow our updates!
✔️ Subscribe to Orca Announcements on Telegram​
✔️ Follow us on Twitter​
✔️ Join our friendly pod on Telegram and Discord​

What wallets can I use with Orca?

To connect to Orca, you'll need Sollet.io (the Solana wallet created by Project Serum), Phantom (a wallet that received a grant from EcoSerum), Solflare (a multiplatform wallet available both on desktop and mobile), Math Wallet (a multichain wallet available on desktop and mobile) or Coin98 extension (a multichain wallet). As other wallets are released that support Solana program execution, we plan to integrate them as well.

Can I use Orca on my phone?

You can use Orca on the phone with Sollet, but the user experience isn't optimal. We'd like to have better support, but we aren’t aware of any reputable wallet provider that supports the execution of Solana smart contracts on mobile devices. If that changes, we'll make it a priority!

Is the Orca smart contract open-source?

Yes! The code for our Constant Product pools are here, and our Stable curve pools are here. Note that the Orca smart contract uses the token-swap program developed by the Solana team. Only the Constant Product pool has undergone a formal audit.

Has Orca been audited?

We use the Solana team's token-swap program. Orca's Constant Product pools use a version which was audited by crypto security firm Kudelski. This deployment uses the commit hash: 3613cea3c.
Orca's Stable curve pools use a more recent version which has not been through a formal audit. However, it has been reviewed by Orca and Solana's engineers. The deployment uses the commit hash: 813aa3.
The Orca web client has not been formally audited, but it has been reviewed by an experienced crypto security engineer.

What are the risks of using Orca?

Orca is a new application on a relatively new blockchain. There are a number of risks to using Orca:
1. Smart contract vulnerabilities: The Solana mainnet is still in beta, and there is always the possibility of an exploit in the smart contract. To mitigate these risks, Orca's smart contract uses the Solana Foundation's token-swap program, which has been audited by crypto security firm Kudelski. It is also very similar in structure to well-understood AMMs on Ethereum, such as Uniswap. Nonetheless, we strongly encourage taking the time to understand the risks before trading.
2. Impermanent loss: The more the token price at withdrawal diverges from the price when you deposited, the less your liquidity stake will be worth. Though this has historically been rare on Uniswap, large price swings could cause liquidity providers to lose money. For more information, this blog post from the Uniswap team is a great primer on impermanent loss.
3. Wallet providers: Orca is compatible with a wide range of wallets, including Phantom, Solflare, MathWallet, Coin98 and an open-source Solana wallet called Sollet.io. A wallet exploit could affect the user.

What does "Not Enough SOL" mean?

SOL is required to pay network fees. The actual fees are likely to be lower, but for simplicity, a small minimum balance of SOL is required to transact on Orca.
(For more details, see the below FAQ: What fees do I pay when I exchange tokens?)

What fees do I pay when I exchange tokens?

Liquidity provider fee: When you make an exchange, 0.3% of the trade value is paid to each liquidity pool involved in the trade. (e.g. A "Double-hop swap" from SOL -> USDT -> ETH would pay 0.3% on SOL -> USDT and another 0.3% on USDT -> ETH.) Later, this translates into earnings for liquidity providers.
The USDC/USDT stable pool has a trading fee of 0.1%, less than the other Constant Product pools.
Network fee: A nominal amount of SOL is also required to pay Solana network fees on each trade. The amount varies depending on the exact parameters of the trade; when trading a token for the first time, more SOL is required to add that token to your wallet. In the past, we've found that most trades cost between 0.0001 — 0.001 SOL.
Orca does not take any additional fees.

How does the Fair Price Indicator work?

When you enter a trade, there are two factors that determine whether we show a Fair price label:
  1. 1.
    Is the price per token within 1% of the rate quoted by CoinGecko?
  2. 2.
    Is the price impact caused by this trade less than 1%?
If either of those two conditions is not true, you'll see a corresponding warning in the UI. However, you can still trade after acknowledging the warning.

What is price impact?

The price you get on Orca depends on the size of the order. As the amount of tokens you buy from the pool increases, the price of the token increases as well. This increase in price is called price impact.

Which curves do your trading pools use?

Our pools use the Constant Product curve (x * y = k) popularized by Uniswap, as well as the stable curve popularized by curve.fi for Stablecoin pools (currently USDC/USDT).
If you have ideas for other curves, please don't hesitate to reach out!

Why did my exchange fail?

The exchange will fail if the price of the underlying pools moves past your Slippage Tolerance setting. Increasing the tolerance in your local settings will raise the chances of your exchange succeeding, but also increase the probability of another party front-running your trade.
Due to current limitations of the smart contract, exchanges that route through multiple pools have a higher likelihood of failing due to slippage. The transaction may succeed if sent again. We recognize that this could be frustrating, so we have plans in the works to improve the logic for trades that use multiple pools.

How do you decide which tokens to list on Orca?

Orca's team will approve tokens based on our own analysis of the project's value and the safety of any dependent smart contracts.

Are tokens on Orca wrapped?

BTC and ETH are wrapped into SPL tokens via Project Serum. All other listed tokens are native SPL tokens.

I have ERC-20 tokens in MetaMask. How can I trade them on Orca?

To trade ERC-20s on Orca, you’ll need to convert them to SPL tokens by transferring them from MetaMask to your Sollet.io account. For a step-by-step guide, see How to Exchange Tokens.

Why should I provide liquidity on Orca?

Users can choose to provide liquidity to Orca’s pools in the hopes of earning money on trading fees. Let’s say you provide liquidity to the SOL-USDC pool. In return, you’ll receive a proportional share of SOL-USDC liquidity tokens.
Then, each time users exchange SOL for USDC or vice versa, 0.3% of the trade value goes into the pool. These fees accumulate over time, causing the pool to be worth more than the value of its deposits.
Later, when you redeem your liquidity tokens, you'll receive a proportional share of the pool in SOL and USDC, which includes any accumulated fees. (However, take note: due to divergence loss, you are not guaranteed a positive return!)

How do I earn fees on Orca?

The 0.3% trading fee automatically goes into the pool after every swap. These fees increase the amount of tokens that you get back when you withdraw liquidity. While you don't need to harvest trading fees, you can harvest ORCA rewards from eligible Aquafarms.

How do I track earnings as an LP?

For now, we recommend tracking it manually. To do this, record how many of each token you've deposited so far, along with how many tokens you're able to currently withdraw and the following formula:
growth=currentTokenA∗currentTokenBinitialTokenA∗initialTokenBgrowth = \dfrac{\sqrt{currentTokenA * currentTokenB}}{\sqrt{initialTokenA*initialTokenB}}
This number represents the percentage growth of your deposit from trading fees. Note that you also to subtract impermanent loss to determine total earnings.

What are liquidity tokens?

Liquidity tokens represent a proportional share of a liquidity pool. For instance, if you contribute to the SOL-USDC pool, you will receive SOL-USDC liquidity tokens. If you have deposited liquidity, you can see these tokens in your wallet.

How are projected earnings and APY calculated?

Given a pool with a pool token supply, token A, and token B, we calculate the ratio: (token A * token B)^(1/2) / (pool token supply). This ratio increases when users trade against the pool, regardless of how the pool size changes. We sample this value every 10 minutes and use this sampled data to calculate how the ratio grows overtime. This allows us to project an APY value for any time period that we've sampled.

Can I withdraw my liquidity anytime?

Yes, you can redeem liquidity tokens for a proportional share of the pool at any time.

Why aren't stable pool pairs balanced like other pools?

The deposits and withdraws for stable pools are often imbalanced, but this is intended behavior.
Stable pools are designed so that the price remains relatively stable despite large imbalances in the pool. For example, the mSOL / SOL pool may have much more mSOL than SOL, but the exchange rate will remain close to even (e.g. 1 mSOL for 1 SOL). However, this means that liquidity providers will deposit and withdraw more mSOL than SOL since the amount they provide must be proportional to the amount of tokens currently in the pool.
This is in contrast to constant product pools where changes in the balance of the pool directly effect the price of the tokens. Since the balance of the pool is proportional to the price of the tokens, liquidity providers can generally expect the value of each token to be the same when depositing or withdrawing

Can I yield farm / stake on Orca?

Yes, Aquafarms are Orca’s yield farming program. View the How to Provide Liquidity on Orca page for a step-by-step guide on how to participate as an LP.
Aquafarm LPs earn both trading fees and ORCA emissions. You will see ORCA rewards accrue continuously and can harvest anytime with no lock-ups. Trading fees accrue directly to your LP tokens and are available when you withdraw.
Update: For a limited time between 28th September and 12th October 2021, ORCA holders were able to stake their ORCA in single-sided pools and earn a share of 65k ORCA in total rewards. Over 2m ORCA was staked by ORCA holders, earning roughly 72% APR.
To learn more about how to stake on Orca.so, check out our video tutorial.

What are Collectibles?

When you accomplish certain tasks, you can earn special Collectible tokens featuring creatures from our marine ecosystem. They have no intrinsic value, but can be traded or transferred like any other SPL token.

Where can I trade Collectibles?

Check out Collectibles Trading! You might also be interested in the Orca Collectibles Telegram group!

Can I exchange programmatically on Orca?

Of course! You can interact with our pools using the token-swap Javascript client from the Solana engineering team. You can also view the deployed program on the Solana Explorer.

Can I integrate with Orca?

Yes! Check out Integrations.
Please direct bug reports, feature requests and related questions to our Discord #integrations channel.

How can I get in touch?

You can find us on Discord, Telegram, or Twitter (@orca_so). We look forward to chatting with you!

How do I file a bug report?

Please report any bugs in the #bug-reports channel on the Orca Discord.
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Last modified 2d ago