About two months ago, Lightning Labs released Lightning Loop, a service that allows users to fill or empty Lightning channels without closing them, thus reducing on-chain fees. The service, developed by Lightning Labs developers Alex Bosworth and Bryan Vu, was created to help users manage their liquidity.
The Loop service, says Bosworth, is helpful for managing liquidity because “it sidesteps the liquidity problem for Lightning, which is that you can’t do flow rebalancing. If you run out of channel capacity in one direction, there’s no possibility that you can get more in a totally self contained, only-Lightning world. You need to go outside in order to rebalance.”