NASA is eyeing bitcoin blockchain technology to curb cyber attacks on aerospace agents, it has emerged.
Blockchain technology is the backbone of the burgeoning bitcoin (BTC) and cryptocurrency industry. Blockchain is a revolutionary way to hold massive amounts of data – because they are held in multiple locations, the records it keeps are truly public and easily verifiable. And now unanticipated applications for the cutting-edge tech are being explored.
US space agency NASA are now considering the benefits of blockchain technology.
The system proposes to leverage an industrial-strength open-source enterprise-blockchain framework
NASA engineer Ronald Reisman
NASA engineer Ronald Reisman believes blockchain-based communication systems could be key in stopping spoofing and denial of service attacks on the American air-traffic control system.
The eagerly-anticipated Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) system is supposed to go live in 2020, but Reisman believes the system is already at risk of cyber attack.
ADS-B is a surveillance technology in which an aircraft determines its position via satellite navigation and enables it to be tracked.PROMOTED STORY
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Blockchain: NASA is eyeing bitcoin blockchain technology (Image: Getty)
Blockchain: NASA is now considering the benefits of blockchain technology (Image: Getty)
However ADS-B does not secure aircrafts’ flight plans and positions, which presents a raft of problems.
And Blockchain could be the solution, believes NASA engineer Reisman.
NASA is reportedly preparing the use of an open-source permissioned blockchain framework to ADS-B’s vulnerabilities.
A blockchain architecture could secure and improve the communication between authorised agents and minimising the risk of tech-savvy criminals gaining access easily.
Reisman’s proposal uses “certificate authority, smart contract support, and higher-bandwidth communication channels” to ensure comms between aircraft and agents such as air traffic control remains secure.
NASA engineer Ronald Reisman said: “The system proposes to leverage an industrial-strength open-source enterprise-blockchain framework called Hyperledger Fabric to demonstrate potential solutions to vexing technical issues that threaten the adoption of ADS-B by Military, Corporate, and other aircraft operators who do not want their operations and movements discernible by the general public.”
Hyperledger Fabric is a blockchain developed away from the fintech sector and designed for enterprise use.
And although his approach “is not perfected” it is “based on available technology,” says the paper.
NASA: The US space agency is exploring blockchain tech (Image: Getty)
NASA: Blockchain is the backbone of the burgeoning bitcoin industry (Image: Getty)
This has been interpreted as a mark of approval of readiness for the wider use of blockchain globally.
Furthermore, Reisman believes the proposed blockchain prototype can be “economically and rapidly deployed” at scale.
He cites the use of Hyperledger Fabric in sectors outside of finance and believes something similar could be used in the aviation industry.
Honeywell, a major manufacturer of aircraft parts, is another industry giant confident blockchain has a part to play in the aerospace industry.