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Spire, SpaceChain Team Up to Prove Blockchain’s Feasibility in Space

By | September 28, 2021
Visualization of applications of blockchain in space. Photo: Spacebit

Visualization of applications of blockchain in space. Photo: Spacebit

Two space-as-a-service solutions providers are teaming up to demonstrate the feasibility of blockchain technology computation in space.

Spire Global, a publicly traded space data analytics company, announced it entered into a partnership agreement with Singapore’s SpaceChain to demonstrate the ability to resolve land-based centralized infrastructure issues using in-space blockchain computing.

SpaceChain has been developing what it calls Decentralized Satellite Infrastructure (DSI), on which decentralized satellite applications can be built and run without the need for any land-based infrastructure. It is targeting these applications for launch service providers, national space agencies, satellite manufacturers, to data analytics startups.

Blockchain technology is essential to SpaceChain’s DSI. It also requires a massive amount of computing power. Spire has therefore offered to provide SpaceChain with its “SABERTOOTH” supercomputing module, which it uses as an embedded AI computing device, to fulfill a two-part mission. Spire will first conduct an on-orbit upload of SpaceChain’s software to an existing satellite, before further building out SpaceChain’s capabilities via a payload on a new satellite, expected to be launched later this year.

“Space is the next frontier for businesses, and through Spire’s satellite infrastructure we are taking global collaboration to the ultimate vantage point,” said SpaceChain Co-founder and CEO Zee Zheng. “This partnership will help us leverage satellite-based computing to remove barriers and create a more open, collaborative and global economy.”

This past summer, SpaceChain launched a blockchain-enabled payload to the International Space Station, where it will demonstrate Ethereum cryptocurrency technology integration. SpaceChain’s first in-space demonstration of Bitcoin technology took place back in 2019.

Spire went public in August after shareholders of NavSight Holdings Inc. approved a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) merger with the company. The company trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the new ticker symbol “SPIR.”