If all goes according to plan, the SpaceX rocket launcher in Florida on Wednesday will blow up a “cryptographic satellite” in a low orbit around the Earth and pave the way for secure cryptography related to blockchain in space.
Cryptosat, as the name implies, is the company that created “Crypto1”, a crypto-satellite unit that goes on board the Falcon 9 rocket for the SpaceX Transporter 5 mission. Blockchain satellite technology has already been tested in the International Space Station.
“We are basically joining Uber of spaceflight,” Cryptosat co-founder Yonatan Winetraub told the Cointelegraph. “Everyone is on the same orbit and we are one of the passengers.
“SpaceX launches a lot of satellites, each of which is doing something different,” he added. do not interfere with the other satellites.
The Crypto1 satellite is a unit the size of a coffee cup made with free-range components. In space, it will offer a physically inaccessible and disruptive platform where blockchain and ledger applications can be launched.
Co-founder Yan Michalevsky said that this type of platform was the first “root-of-trust” outside the world – a source that can always be trusted within a cryptographic system – which is “not dependent on other companies’ satellites” than in reality. provides the hardware in orbit and adds:
“There is a great need for this. If we are looking at protocols, especially in Web3, then there are whole financial systems and smart negotiation systems, a kind of digital legal agreements that depend on the reliability of the cryptography behind it.
Michalevsky said one of the most exciting applications for the unit is to set up zero-knowledge evidence rules, which he says are more commonly used, such as voting in a decentralized independent organization (DAO), to make decisions without revealing individual votes.
Other programs for the unit include the possible distribution of an entire blockchain, having the ledger out of reach of attackers could mean that cryptocurrency mining could become a relic of the past as it would theoretically no longer require decentralization through multiple verifiers.
He said there was a need to consolidate units in space as attackers have the incentive and ability to access ground-based units, but the technology to capture and tamper with satellite is not available.
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“Another feature that is unique is that the communication takes place through a radio frequency, you can not really hide and attack,” Winetraub added, “anyone with an antenna will know if you are doing something funny.
“We have seen a huge boom in blockchain technology in recent years and we can provide this service in space. What we hope for is to be able to service the blockchain industry and provide these modules that everyone can rely on with a level of security that is unprecedented.
Satellite communications with Earth are an integral part of any orbital entity that can charge data from Earth. Winetraub said that “internet communication is not something that is trivial to do in space.”
“Working with space is not the same as working here on earth,” he added.
“It goes around the earth, we start debugging, we get to the problem, now we have to wait an hour and a half until it comes back.
He said bridging the gap between what people are used to in terms of fast internet communication and space constraints is an ongoing effort that began with a series of experiments the company conducted at the International Space Station (ISS) earlier this year.
Connected: Blockchain Safes in Space: SpaceChain, Blockstream, and Cryptosat
In March, Cryptosat satellite participated in many experiments on the ISS, one experiment created cryptographic signatures with the keys that were created and stored in space. A tweet mentioning the Cryptosat Twitter account generated the certificate with a digital signature over the tweet in response to the mention.
– Cryptosat Bot (@cryptosatbot) March 24, 2022
Speaking about the experiments, Michalevsky said that they “enabled us to create interesting uses for the space,” adding:
“Basically, what we were doing with this experiment was to practice operations in the end, in terms of communication with space, working with space agencies, running code both on the ground and in space, and letting them work together.
Regarding the next thing for Cryptosat after the launch, Michalevsky said that they were not patting themselves on the back and taking a break now:
“We are already in the process of planning the next satellite, hopefully heading towards the end of this year, there is a lot to do as we continue to update the software platform.
“We are aiming for some of them [the modules in orbit] at these early stages, “he added,” but in the end we envisage possibly a few dozen of them to provide constant access as they orbit the earth.
Ground expansion to contact the orbit units was also in play at the company, where Michalevsky said the goal was to have a ground station that sees at least one satellite at a time.
The consumer product is an area that Michalevsky also wants to work on, as he says that the space industry does not have a simple interface for users of Web3 applications.
“We want to create a great API to provide things like signing NFTs in space, providing things that are not only business, backend applications, but also very useful for consumers, and then enable them to build a financial infrastructure on top of this stellar system of trust. satellites. “
He added: “We will dig deep into the blockchain space and create a lot of terrestrial infrastructure that would be compatible with different blockchain protocols.”
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