Building a Decentralized Internet in Space

 Lockheed Martin and Filecoin want to put blockchain in spaceships to build a decentralized internet in space.

At an event on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos (Switzerland), the Filecoin Foundation said it is working with Lockheed Martin to create an open source blockchain network accessible in space. The first test is scheduled to take place in August, according to CoinDesk.

The blockchain technology used in this project is based on the IPFS protocol, also known as the Interplanetary File System. IPFS protocol allows network nodes to store and share data at high speed, currently used by Filecoin in digital payments and a cryptocurrency of the same name.

When launched into space, this protocol supports the transmission and storage of information to create a network like the Internet, but decentralized and less dependent on Earth.

IPFS protocol emulation. Photo: Filecoin
IPFS protocol emulation. Photo: Filecoin

According to Marta Belcher, President of the Filecoin Foundation, the centralized Internet model currently works inefficiently in the space. "Every time you click, data will be retrieved from a server in a specific location. So, if the user is on the Moon, access will experience a delay of seconds due to the data. transmitted from Earth," Belcher said. With IPFS, data will not be retrieved based on location, but from whatever is closest to the user, thus reducing latency.

"We needed to develop the technology to be able to stay in space for a long time without being completely dependent on communications and data storage on Earth," said Joe Landon, Vice President of Lockheed Martin Space. . According to Landon, by reducing the number of times data has to travel to Earth and back into space, the IPFS decentralized storage model makes transmission and communication more efficient in space, reducing the risk of information, for example for example in case urgent instructions need to be sent.

According to the announcement, in the next few months, the two companies will define a spacecraft platform to host IPFS, test data transmission to and from Earth and other spacecraft. The test is scheduled to be conducted in low-orbit, near-Earth space before extending the range.

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