How Bitcoin Mining Could Solve One Of The Issues With Space-Based Solar Power

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Russia’s Soyuz MS-06 spacecraft blasts off from the launch pad to the International Space Station (ISS) early on September 13, 2017. (KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images)

</div> </div> <p>In the incredibly competitive world of bitcoin mining, one of the keys to the game&nbsp;is finding the cheapest possible source of energy. In the not so distant future, that source of energy may be found in space.</p> <p>As a quick review, the&nbsp;bitcoin mining process is what keeps everyone in the world on the same Bitcoin ledger; it effectively prevents people from spending the same bitcoin twice. Bitcoin miners are rewarded for their work through the creation of new bitcoin and transaction fees (known as the <a href=”https://bitcoin.org/en/glossary/block-reward” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”>block reward</a>).</p> <p><a href=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0WCaoGiAOHE” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”>At a recent Bitcoin security conference in Paris</a> (called Breaking Bitcoin), cryptography consultant and former <a href=”https://bitcoincore.org” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”>Bitcoin Core</a> contributor <a href=”https://twitter.com/petertoddbtc” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”>Peter Todd</a>&nbsp;explored the idea of mining bitcoin in space.</p> <p> </p> <p><span style=”font-weight: 400″>It should be noted that this is more of a thought exercise at this point than something that is going to happen at any point in the near future. As Todd has </span><a href=”https://petertodd.org/2017/bitcoin-mining-space-hard-sci-fi#fn:article” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”><span style=”font-weight: 400″>explained on his blog</span></a><span style=”font-weight: 400″>, “Sorry guys, but the phrase ‘not as crazy as it sounds’ just means we’re in the realm of hard sci-fi rather than pure fantasy: </span><i><span style=”font-weight: 400″>if</span></i><span style=”font-weight: 400″> space-based solar power ever becomes practical, </span><i><span style=”font-weight: 400″>then</span></i><span style=”font-weight: 400″> it’d made sense to put Bitcoin miners in space. But we still need to make space solar practical, and that’s a lot way off.”</span></p> <p><b>Generating Power in Space</b></p> <p>Putting solar panels in space is an idea that has been explored for many years, and the reasoning behind it is quite simple.</p>

<p>“You put a bunch of solar panels up there, and it’s nice and shiny,” explained Todd during his presentation. “There’s none of those annoying clouds to get in the way. And you beam your power back to earth.”</p> <p>There have also been proposals for the generation of nuclear power in space, but no matter what kind of power generation you’re talking about, one key issue remains: How do you get the power back to earth in an efficient manner?</p> <p><a href=”https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn19497-out-of-this-world-proposal-for-solar-wind-power/” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”>In a 2010 article in the New Scientist</a>, one proposal for beaming power from space back to earth was described by the president of a consultancy firm that specializes in space solar power as providing less energy than moonlight.</p>” readability=”49.62313601446″>

Russia’s Soyuz MS-06 spacecraft blasts off from the launch pad to the International Space Station (ISS) early on September 13, 2017. (KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images)

In the incredibly competitive world of bitcoin mining, one of the keys to the game is finding the cheapest possible source of energy. In the not so distant future, that source of energy may be found in space.

As a quick review, the bitcoin mining process is what keeps everyone in the world on the same Bitcoin ledger; it effectively prevents people from spending the same bitcoin twice. Bitcoin miners are rewarded for their work through the creation of new bitcoin and transaction fees (known as the block reward).

At a recent Bitcoin security conference in Paris (called Breaking Bitcoin), cryptography consultant and former Bitcoin Core contributor Peter Todd explored the idea of mining bitcoin in space.

It should be noted that this is more of a thought exercise at this point than something that is going to happen at any point in the near future. As Todd has explained on his blog, “Sorry guys, but the phrase ‘not as crazy as it sounds’ just means we’re in the realm of hard sci-fi rather than pure fantasy: if space-based solar power ever becomes practical, then it’d made sense to put Bitcoin miners in space. But we still need to make space solar practical, and that’s a lot way off.”

Generating Power in Space

Putting solar panels in space is an idea that has been explored for many years, and the reasoning behind it is quite simple.

“You put a bunch of solar panels up there, and it’s nice and shiny,” explained Todd during his presentation. “There’s none of those annoying clouds to get in the way. And you beam your power back to earth.”

There have also been proposals for the generation of nuclear power in space, but no matter what kind of power generation you’re talking about, one key issue remains: How do you get the power back to earth in an efficient manner?

In a 2010 article in the New Scientist, one proposal for beaming power from space back to earth was described by the president of a consultancy firm that specializes in space solar power as providing less energy than moonlight.


Source: Forbes

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