Realising a Greater Mission for Crypto
The private space industry is a rapidly-growing market, projected to be worth trillions of dollars in the near future, according to a recent Goldman Sachs (2016) report. A new vision of space is beginning to emerge. Once only accessible to governments and large corporations, it is now open to small companies and events for public participation. Exciting projects involving new space missions, the Moon, Mars and asteroid mining will all bring considerable opportunity and economic value for future generations.
Those resources will not only change the course of humanity, but also provide an avenue for investors to meaningfully participate in our next great adventure. Blockchain alone gives us unprecedented capabilities to create and trade value in society. As the foundational platform of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, it can help to create and distribute new values to be gained from exploring the final frontier. Tokenisation of missions and space assets will help to create and measure new value to humankind, whilst appreciating increased liquidity and public participation.
SPACEBIT VISION Spacebit is embarking on the world’s first open source commercial space exploration program. Its purpose is to identify and explore the critical space resources necessary for economies of the future and human expansion, from our home planet into space. Unlike all previous governmental or private space missions, the Spacebit mission is designed so that all participants and contributors who devote their time, money or IP, will be able to benefit from the space program.
With the emergence of new economic models – boundaries between fund and a company will fade into one. Ultimate
ly Spacebit is designed to benefit society as a whole, with the aim of becoming a decentralised space agency. Spacebit will be structured as a Digital Autonomous Corporation (DAC); however, in contrast to former attempts to create autonomous organisations, we plan to have strong strategic guidance from astronauts, prominent economists and experts from both the Space and Blockchain industries. The plan is to implement a bottom-up approach, automating certain low-level technical processes using various DApps and then move up in complexity. Such an approach will help us to better control the execution of the initial missions and provide an opportunity to test various DApps that are currently being developed by our team. Even before full automation is possible, we plan to engage the public by means of polling, in order to allow them to choose from pre-selected space projects. This will also involve a new blockchain-powered model of collaboration on the system design, management and financing of space missions.
“..if this technology is to have profound impact on the planet, then it needs to be, or it should be, everywhere and widely distributed in terms of different use cases” (Joseph Lubin, 2017)
Thus, the original DAO concept aimed to act as a digital jurisdiction, making it a friendly and easy way for organisations, entrepreneurs and investors to operate (Cuende & Izquierdo, 2017). At Spacebit, our aim is to implement a hybrid approach with several ‘tethers’ into different jurisdictions, which would allow us to function globally. For this reason, we will focus less on decentralisation of strategic management and more on decentralisation of control and automation of various organisational processes. Don and Alex Tapscott (2017) emphasise that a distributed ecosystem need not be a disorganised one and improved governance need not imply formal governmental legislation or regulation. A cooperative process of multi-stakeholder dialogue and stewardship can go a long way towards improving trust and helping new technological systems to develop in a socially beneficial manner.
POWER OF AUTOMATION We are at the beginning of a forth industrial and technological revolution which will fundamentally change the way we work. In its scope, scale and complexity, the changes will be unlike anything humankind has seen before. Blockchain technology will play a significant role not only in the processes of automation, but also in empowering people to become involved in various information flows and to take part in important decisions which will undoubtedly benefit humanity as a whole. Space exploration is an area in which every human being is a stakeholder.
One of the reasons why the US moon program was successful and the Soviet program failed lies within the key concept of free-flowing information. The Soviets kept their information largely unavailable and fragmented, whereas
The US freely communicated with multiple organisations involved in the Apollo Project. At Spacebit, we believe that unobstructed information flows will play an integral role within the Fourth Industrial Revolution, especially with regards to working on distributed space projects. Smart contracts will undeniably help; not only to optimise processes to increase efficiency, but also to create new economic models. Blockchain is a unique technology, which is why it is crucial to innovate at both the technological level and within economic models which can be developed with the assistance of this technology.
In the past, space missions were owned exclusively by governments and large corporations. Our aim is to change that in order to allow everyone to participate in and receive the benefits of space exploration, either financially or by collaborating and working on the projects. Mankind’s 21st century thrust into space would herald in the world’s next industrial revolution, which may even be called the ‘Space Industrial Revolution’ (Dr. APJ Kalam, former president of India).
SPACEBIT MISSIONS The first missions will involve various low orbit (LEO) experiments in order to test equipment and prepare for the resource exploration of the Moon and later of asteroids. In the first stage, we plan to generate revenue by selling tokenised data to various public and commercial actors. We are already partnered with a number of companies to design a new ‘IoT from the space’ traceability platform that will bring a new level of transparency into supply chains and provide more granularity into the movement of physical assets on the surface of Earth.
The main mission which we plan to commence by 2020 will involve sending a robotic probe to the moon that will scan the lunar surface in search of Helium 3 and water, while the lander will physically assess and test the presence of those elements on the moon’s surface. Those steps will then be followed by missions to other planets and ultimately, interstellar missions.
Some of the options open for public consideration and decision making will be:
• Moon Relay for communication for the benefit of future moon missions and water prospecting. • Building of a new international station utilising low cost technologies such as inflatable modules and 3D printing. • Telescope/relay on the back/far side of the moon for the first step involving asteroid prospecting and deep space communication. • Creating the first orbital power station with the prospect of delivering low-cost high-power electricity to the Earth’s surface.
ROLE OF BLOCKCHAIN TECHNOLOGY IN SPACE INDUSTRY We believe that a new space age is coming, an age of direct, and distributed participation of citizens in future space projects. There are multiple aspects why blockchain technology can be appropriated by the space industry, they include economic, such as new funding and profit redistribution models, technical where such technology can help to facilitate and improve technical capabilities of the mission and finally future legal/governance models of space exploration.
In both the Outer Space Treaty and Moon Treaty it is clearly stated that for the private exploration and appropriation of space resource to take place, consensus of “all mankind” is needed. We believe that blockchain technology can help to develop a fair consensus mechanism that will benefit humankind in its entirety. That will involve processes for establishing claims, profits, and equitable sharing, and blockchain technology will play an important role in a new governance model and may facilitate collaboration and tracking of various transactions and interactions within this innovative and revolutionary new space industry.
MAKING A BIGGER LEAP FOR CRYPTO Identity is a reflection of a complex relationship between the social and the personal. The Crypto community is a social system comprised of a diverse set of actors. Whilst there is a perceived connection between people in crypto, based on overlaps of intent, identity, interest and experience, it
remains vaguely undefined. Norms and values of the crypto community are questioned by society and receive a lot of negative press coverage. For this reason, it is important to have a grand vision which goes beyond simple speculation and ultimately forms a foundational step towards the creation of a new and more transparent economic system and society.
Fluctuations in markets, the fork crisis and contentious, highly consequential token sales combined with a rise in Bitcoin price has meant that 2017 is an inflection year, the year we must and will decide whether the crypto community has the ability to solidify our interests and collectively enable the token economy to expand, by pursuing a visionary approach and supporting projects outside the closed community – projects which truly matter to humanity. It is time to think outside of the box. We firmly believe that now is the correct time for implementing the way forward for leading the world in space exploration. In (figure 1), it is shown that the crypto economy is already capable of supporting large-scale space missions. The risk profile and benefits of crypto currency itself are very alike, with the risk and potential benefits associated with space exploration. It can also bring a different level of liquidity into space projects in the future, making public, direct participation in space programs a reality. This in return can drive valuation of tokenised assets and crypto currency to a new level, whilst creating a positive image for the crypto community itself.
Spacebit is set to be a pioneering force, and this is where its competitive advantage comes into play. Collaboratively, we should reaffirm the value of crypto currency and demonstrate our engagement in important and visionary projects such as the space industry through establishing projects which connect with a real-world economy. The sooner we make these commitments, the more likely we are to succeed as a group and the quicker we will all benefit from the extraordinary returns.
Spacebit has already attracted substantial interest from the space industry with a large number of collaborators around the world. We invite everyone from the blockchain community to participate in the future of space exploration together.