NASA funds blockchain research to better communications in space

US space agency NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration has approved funding for the blockchain research to improve space communication. According to the latest reports, NASA has awarded a grant of $330,000 to scientists of the University of Akron so that they can work more dedicatedly on the potential blockchain technologies for bettering space communications.

The blockchain research team is led by Dr. Jin Wei Kocsis, an assistant professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Akron. Kocsis and his team are developing a Resilient Networking and Computing Paradigm (RNCP) for future space exploration. The official website of the University of Akron stated that Dr. Jin Wei Kocsis has been selected for a prestigious NASA Early Career Faculty grant. “The work done by Kocsis will advance cognitive communications for NASA science and exploration by developing a resilient networking and computing paradigm that will improve the efficiency of space communications,” the website said.

According to the research team, they will be using cutting-edge technologies to develop the RNCP like Ethereum blockchain, artificial intelligence (AI), as well as deep learning methods. The research team stated that they would be using blockchain technique to design and develop a secure and decentralized infrastructure to process the massive data for space exploration as well as related science. They said that their infrastructure would be designed to facilitate deep learning based data analysis. Also, the research team wants to exploit the software-defined networking (SDN) and plan an adaptive management strategy to achieve high scalability for the block-chain based infrastructure.

The researchers informed that they would analyze and examine how RNCP performs in different space communication environments like lower Earth orbit and deep space. “To achieve this goal, we will use Tensorflow, Ethereum Blockchain, Matlab/Simulink and Mininet to implement our secure and decentralized computing and data analysis infrastructure, the RNCP researchers said. The RNCP research has just started, and if this becomes successful, then it will definitely improve communications in space and reduce the time lag between the machines in space and their Earth-based controllers. Also, RNCP can improve the robustness of data collection in space and its decentralized approach ensures that there is no degradation or loss of crucial data collected by probes in space.

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