A 21st century space race between Elon Musk and BitMEX appears to be brewing, with both sides committing to launch their respective crypto of their choice first to the literal moon.
On June 4, the popular cryptocurrency exchange BitMEX announced that it would support space robot company Astrobotic Technology in the company’s mission to send its first commercial landing to the moon in Q4 2020.
Noting that the mission aims to be the first case in which “a private company leading a coalition of government, academia, industry and international partners reaches the lunar surface”, BitMEX plans to make the case by providing one-on-one kind of physical bitcoin to the surface of the moon. Referring to Musk as a “Dogecoin hero”
“We don’t mind dog money, we thought it was right to help Bitcoin get there first.”
The announcement followed Elon Musk’s news in early May that SpaceX planned to launch a Dogecoin-funded payload on one of its first rockets to the moon, claiming that DOGE would become the first cryptocurrency to reach lunar orbit next year.
Elon Musk responded to BitMEX’s newly discovered astronomical ambitions on Twitter, announcing: “A new space race has begun!”
While the responses to Elon’s tweet are largely his followers, who barricaded DOGE to win the crypto space race, others note that there are more pressing problems on Earth than whether the chosen crypto token is the first to enter the orbit of another celestial body .
Can we take care of the problems here on Earth before we are thrown into space while the homeless sleep on the streets and the middle class struggles to cope?
Wtf is wrong with you? Look around
– Dougzart (@ Dougzart1) June 6, 2021
Although several projects exploring the usefulness of creating a crypto infrastructure from space have captured the popular imagination, like Musk’s Dogecoin expedition, Tesla’s CEO’s plans to bring cryptocurrency out of this world are not the first.
Blockstream appears to be the first pioneer in the use of crypto satellites, launching satellites to broadcast Bitcoin transactions from space in August 2017.
In August 2020, Robonomics and Kusama announced an ambitious plan to develop an “interplanetary architecture” capable of transmitting data between Mars and Earth using the Kusama network.
CryptoSat outlined the concept behind its ambitious plan to launch a nano-satellite the size of a coffee cup into space in a new document from November 2017, with the satellite to operate as an isolated cryptographic module from orbit. The team plans to prove the launch concept this year before sending a whole constellation of CryptoSats into orbit later.
Spacechain launched in a similar way in 2017 and successfully deployed nodes in orbit. On June 3, 2021, the project announced that the multi-character payload Ethereum, intended for installation on the International Space Station, was launched aboard the SpaceX rocket.