Minerva Space Technologies is looking for partners to join its ambitious campaign to improve knowledge of the space domain.
After securing a $ 150 million credit facility, Minerva intends to create an ecosystem where information about space objects can be collected, compared and verified with non-fungible digital tokens, i.e. unique.
Non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, are all the rage in the digital art world, where individuals buy and sell music videos and cartoons with cryptocurrency.
In this case, however, the unique tokens would be associated not with digital art but with observations of orbiting spacecraft and debris acquired by sensors on the ground and in space, including the sensors that Minerva is planning. to throw.
Unique tokens are important because they can be encrypted and stored on a blockchain with all of their history, making them extremely difficult to modify.
“We want to provide a service that validates and authenticates data,” said Nelson Santini, co-founder and CEO of Minerva. “If my operations in space are based on incomplete, inaccurate, or corrupted data, then I have a problem.”
Minerva plans to correlate visual observations with radar and telemetry from public and private sources to provide a clear picture of the space domain.
“We are looking for partnership opportunities with companies that want to execute the mission,” Santini said.
As more data enters the ecosystem, the quality and fidelity of the dataset will improve. With enough data, Minerva will be able to harness AI algorithms to analyze current events, track satellite maneuvers, anticipate events and make recommendations, Santini said.
Santini founded Minerva with Michael Bouchard, a serial entrepreneur who was previously chief scientist for communications and cybersecurity company DataPath Inc. and founded Secure Axxess Solutions, a specialist in advanced technologies and secure communications.
“As the Founder and Chief Scientist of SecureAxxess, investing in Minerva Space Technologies is a natural next step in building a larger technology ecosystem,” Bouchard said via email.
Bouchard cites three objectives for the new business.
“We want to be the first to commercialize our blockchain and NFT technologies in space to help redefine how ‘space domain knowledge and command and control’ come together in space,” Bouchard said.
In addition, Minerva plans to operate satellites and sensors in geostationary and cislunar space. Finally, the company seeks to harness artificial intelligence and augmented reality “to help evolve and improve the user experience and take it to the next level,” Bouchard said.
A branch of Minerva “is already working on building payloads and demonstrating rockets and satellites in space,” Santini said. “We want to make sure that by the time we put these assets into orbit, we have a distribution network ready.”
Minerva has secured a $ 150 million credit facility that can be extended to $ 500 million once the company reaches the milestones, Santini said.
This article originally appeared in the November 2021 issue of SpaceNews magazine.