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In Mars v1, MARS stakers were responsible for governing the protocol and backstopping it in the event of a shortfall event. Staked tokens were represented by xMARS, a transferable liquid staking token.

Within Mars' new architecture, MARS stakers secure the Mars Hub network, govern outpost features and risk parameters and, in return for doing so, they earn protocol fees. Staked MARS will not be represented by a transferable liquid staking token or used to backstop the protocol (more on that below).

The token’s utility will mainly materialise via delegation. Specifically, MARS holders will be able to stake (or delegate) their tokens to a number of validators within the network in order to:

  1. Secure the chain: All else being equal, the more tokens staked within the network, the more secure the chain as it becomes more expensive to attack. As a result, by delegating MARS tokens to a validator, users will help secure the chain.
  2. Access delegated governance: When staking tokens with a particular validator, users are delegating the voting power of their tokens to that validator. In this sense, delegation allows users to participate in governance by staking their tokens with (and thereby increasing the voting power of) validators who align with their views. A user can passively allow a validator to vote on their behalf or they can actively participate in votes themselves.
  3. Receive fees: In return for securing the chain, a share of protocol fees will flow to validators and their delegators. Note that the share that flows to delegators depends on the specific commission charged by each validator. Specific details are provided in the next section, “Value Flows”.

The unbonding period (the length of time to return staking amount after unstaking) is 14 days.