Bitcoin experiments from space on BitMEX


The research department of the crypto money exchange BitMEX is testing a Bitcoin system that can run nodes over satellite without an internet connection.

In the last written statement made by the exchange, it was stated that after the experiment with Bitcoin miners, the Bitcoin satellite system of Blockstream, a Blockchain technology company, was successfully established. The team was also informed that they were using a Blockstream satellite kit and flat panel antenna at a cost of $ 1200.

The statement stated that the installation took several hours:

“Actually what needs to be done here is very simple. It is enough to set up a satellite dish, point it in the right direction, connect it to a laptop running Linux and run some special Blockstream software along with a version of Bitcoin Core 0.19.1. ”

After the synchronization, the satellite-centric node was about two minutes behind internet-connected nodes. This showed that retrieving and verifying the full history of the block could involve a small delay of about two minutes while using the satellite:

“The client downloads blocks in chunks. First, the first part of the block, then the main part, again comes in pieces. Depending on how the satellite broadcasts block data, the node may not always download blocks sequentially. The gaps of the missing blocks can be filled later. ”

Users staying in remote areas where there is no internet connection can synchronize their Bitcoin nodes thanks to satellite and can download and verify all blocks without internet.

In May, Blockchain tech firm Blockstream made a major update to its free satellite services. With this update, the obligation of the system to stay connected to the internet was removed and the capacity was increased from 120 kbps to approximately 1.6 mbps.

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