European Space Agency Provides Funding to Blockchain Project That Records Satellite Data

While crypto might not be heading for the moon yet, the underlying blockchain technology is increasingly finding uses in space. One of the latest enterprises is a project that records satellite data on the blockchain. The European Space Agency (ESA), which is a major international organization funded by various governments in Europe, recently announced funding for this venture.

Blockchain for the Mining Sector

This is not the first time the ESA is contributing to blockchain projects. In its latest endeavour, it will work with Hypervine, which is based in Scotland, to improve the transparency of mining data by bringing satellite data and blockchain together. The news was first revealed by a news publication that focuses on the oil and gas industry in the Middle East.

Improving Safety in the Mining Sector

The goal of this project will be to prevent mistakes and potentially fatal accidents in the mining sector. To do this, a unified and secure database will be made available for the industry. This project will use technology developed by Hypervine, which allows mining teams to record data on an immutable ledger. This will help to eliminate the risk that minor data alterations could be magnified along the production chain. 

The satellite data, which will be recorded on a distributed ledger, will be presented to mining companies so they can have a trusted source of information which will replace paper-based sources of data. These paper-based data sources usually have to be cross-checked with multiple teams in various locations around the world. Sometimes, this process can take months to confirm all the data that comes from fragmented sources, which usually comes at a high cost. This project is going to help cut down both the time and the costs for the mining sector.

Better Environmental Protection

This project will also help boost environmental protection. This is because the efficiency it will offer will help to reduce carbon emissions due to improved operational efficiency. Beatrice Barresi, technical officer at ESA Space Solutions, said that the use of satellite data in the mining sector is seeing increased investment. By combining such initiatives with blockchain, better commercial outcomes are expected.

Barresi added that it was their main goal to "make sectors such as quarrying cleaner, safer, and more accountable". Cooperation with firms such as Hypervine will allow the ESA to achieve these goals while "improving the standards across various industries", she said further and added that it had been a great experience working with Hypervine on the project, and they were looking forward to the next phases.

The ESA and Blockchain Technology

The ESA has been exploring the blockchain sector as well as space research. In 2019, the agency granted the SpaceChain startup around $66,000 to develop a multisig satellite wallet. Previously, the agency had issued a whitepaper on a roadmap for implementing blockchain in Earth observation. 

While most major governments have clamped down hard on cryptocurrencies, they remain open to the potential that blockchain holds. With a major multi-government agency like the ESA embracing blockchain, it is safe to assume that this technology will become the norm around the world. Considering the improved efficiency that it has to offer, it could replace all other paper-based processes at all government agencies and private firms in the future.

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