NASA Awarded Grant to Support Autonomous Spacecraft Using Blockchain Technology

NASA Awarded Grant to Support Autonomous Spacecraft Using Blockchain Technology

NASA has been awarded a grant that supports the development of an autonomous spacecraft that will utilize blockchain technology in order to make decisions without human intervention. This reported by Space.com on April 18.

The assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, Jin Wei Kocsis, received a $330,000 NASA grant support her research. The program will take a closer look into the Ethereum based blockchain technology regarding the development of a secure computing system to be utilized in deep space.

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Kocsis states…

“In this project, the Ethereum Blockchain technology will be exploited to develop a decentralized, secure, and cognitive networking and computing infrastructure for deep space exploration… I hope to develop technology that can recognize environmental threats and avoid them, as well as complete a number of tasks automatically. I am honored that NASA recognized my work, and I am excited to continue challenging technology’s ability to think and do on its own.”

The NASA spacecraft will reportedly use smart contract technology in order to “think for itself”. This will enable it to automatically detect and dodge debris in a timely and efficient manner.

Kocsis is hoping that this technology will allow the spacecraft to complete more tasks, give scientists more time for analysis, and provide more data so that operators would no longer be occupied with environmental threats to the craft.

A timeline wasn’t disclosed for when this technology would be sent into space. The advanced communications program manager, Thomas Kacpura, stated that this is the first time the center considered blockchain applications regarding navigation and space communications.

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