5 Frequently Asked Questions About SpaceChain

Since its launch in March 2017, SpaceChain has received many questions about its purpose, technology and roadmap. We’ve combed through all of SpaceChain’s various social media platforms and AMA (ask-me-anything) sessions and done a roundup of 5 most commonly asked questions about SpaceChain.

1. What exactly is SpaceChain?

SpaceChain is a community-based space platform that combines space and blockchain technologies to build the world’s first open-source blockchain enabled satellite network, allowing users to develop and run decentralized applications in space. The SpaceChain operating system is available to anyone, anywhere in the world, all while remaining secure and immutable through proven blockchain cryptography. In doing so, SpaceChain’s vision is to remove barriers and allow a global community to access and collaborate in space.

2. What is the short-term goal for SpaceChain?

SpaceChain’s short term goals currently involve working on their proprietary hardware technology, building partnerships, launching and testing space-based blockchain nodes.

    • SpaceChain OS

    SpaceChainOS is SpaceChain’s open-source operating system, that acts as a blockchain application sandbox. This allows developers all over the world to develop, test and execute their space-based applications with ease. The isolated environment of the satellites is especially useful for apps that need more thorough testing in real-time. The OS went live in March 2018 and the SpaceChain team regularly conducts rigorous tests to improve on its functionality and stability.

    • SpaceChain hardware

    SpaceChain is also working on building a special computer chip that will be used in the satellites. Stay tuned to our regular reports for more updates on the team’s progress!

    • Satellite launches

    Following the successful launch of its first space-based node on February 2, 2018, SpaceChain’s second-generation blockchain node was launched successfully on October 25, 2018, at 6:57am local time from Taiyuan Satellite Launch Centre, Xinzhou, China. The node functions well in simple in-orbit testing, and more detailed and longer tests will be run later on. Watch the node orbit the earth in real time !

    • Partnerships

    One of SpaceChain’s core values is collaboration, and it believes that advancement in the space industry can be accelerated through partnerships with like-minded entities who share the same values.

    SpaceChain has formed numerous valuable partnerships already with organizations such as Qtum (SG),  Arch Mission (US), SpacePharma (IL), Open Cosmos (UK), Nanoracks (US), SpaceBelt (US) and Nexus (US), as well as affiliations with the Ethereum Enterprise Alliance , Chamber of Digital Commerce and Blockchain Research Institute. SpaceChain also signed an agreement with Satellite Applications Catapult (UK) to establish operations in the UK and EU. SpaceChain aims to build more partnerships with both private and government space agencies to share ideas and resources for future collaboration.

3. Will SpaceChain have its own public blockchain? Is there another way to access SpaceChain’s satellite nodes besides through the internet?

SpaceChain is currently using the basic service API of Qtum and Ethereum blockchains to build its SpaceChain OS upon. As co-founder Jeff Garzik explains, it was a way to start a new decentralized network and its token during the first stage of development.

SpaceChain is focusing on building a SpaceChain OS that is compatible with many different public chains. We’ve integrated with Qtum, and are now working on Ethereum.  We do want to integrate more public chains to interact with more open-source communities. However, this is a fast-growing industry, and we will be closely observing to decide what is the best route for the development of the project.

As of now, the connection to the satellites will still be through the ground stations in China and the United Kingdom. But, as the project progresses, there may be portable devices made available to the public that will allow them to directly communicate with the satellites.

4. Are other private space agencies like SpaceX and Nexus considered direct competitors to SpaceChain?

SpaceX and Nexus have been causing a buzz in the space community in recent months. Nexus is especially closer to home, with their plans to host a decentralized cryptocurrency on a satellite orbiting Earth.

However, SpaceChain is a community, not a competitor. The aim of our community is to build partnerships with commercial companies instead. The non-profit foundation hopes to build a large community and accelerate the growth of the space economy. That is why SpaceChain has partnered with Nexus to deploy a decentralized internet in space.

5. How can SpaceChain’s token be used?

SpaceChain’s token can currently be used to access and develop on SpaceChain OS.   As the community and interested third parties develop new applications, SpaceChain’s token can be used to pay for space services. One main use for the token is for companies who wish to build and execute space-based apps on the SpaceChain OS. They can pay for access using SPC tokens, similar to an app store where a fee is paid to get the app listed. The public can then purchase and use these apps with SPC tokens.

SpaceChain also offers its expert advice to companies on token usage. It will consult with their community to determine whether the proposed pricing for the app is viable. If the community is not agreeable, the companies will then have to reassess their pricing strategy.  

This draws upon SpaceChain’s core values of collaboration and decentralization and gets the community involved in the decision-making processes.


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