A company made history on Monday by launching a Bitcoin mining rig called Space Miner One into the stratosphere, where it confirmed transactions and mined Bitcoin over 100,000 feet from the surface of the planet.
Attached to a weather balloon, the Space Miner One rig drifted through the lower atmosphere before returning to Earth on a parachute where it was safely recovered from a field in Lithuania. The rig was connected to the internet via satellite phone and was also fitted with an ASIC mining chip, a Raspberry Pi 3, battery, GoPro Hero 5, and a metal souvenir coin for a competition winner.
We spoke to Miner One CEO Pranas Slušnys about the meaning of the launch and his plans for the future.
“The goal of Space Miner One is to symbolically express our belief that bitcoin and cryptocurrency in general is about the future and the revolutionary technology at its heart: so-called blockchain technology. And with this new technology, the sky’s the limit.”
Mr. Slušnys boasts an impressive resume including over 20 years experience in IT&T business and data center construction and management. The Miner One project is currently raising funds to build a mining farm in northern Sweden where low temperatures and energy costs will all aid the success of the project’s crypto-mining operation, which the team believe will grant investors better returns than mining at home.
The next step of the project is building the mining facility. Mr. Slušnys informed us that they are eager to start mining, particularly with the rebounding prices of Bitcoin and Ether, stating that this will help pay for more of the cutting-edge equipment the project needs to grow. The project has committed to begin payouts to investors by the end of the summer.
Miner One CEO told CCN that while Monday’s launch was symbolic, he firmly believes mining cryptocurrency in space will be a reality in the future.
“We think mining and the technology it is based on will, of course, eventually reach outer space. In a sense, it already has to the extent that communications channels carrying information around the bitcoin network use satellites.
We even hear word that NASA is researching the possibility of using blockchain technology for communication and navigation in space.”
While the Miner One team will be keeping their feet on the ground, NASA has indeed begun blockchain research for deep space navigation, and it may well be that in the future, satellites armed with mining nodes and solar panels could operate cryptocurrency networks and generate returns from outer space.
Images from MinerOne.