NASA looking to add security to Air Traffic with Blockchain Technology

We already know that Bitcoin is slowly moving towards space. Now the National Aeronautics and Space Administration – NASA – also wants to use blockchain technology for its infrastructure.

An aero-computer engineer at NASA Ames Research Center suggested that blockchain networks and smart contracts could help decreasing some security problems and enable private and anonymous communication with air traffic services.

The U.S. government proposed a way to secure data about military and corporate activities using the blockchain.

“The design innovation is the use of an open source permissioned blockchain framework to enable aircraft privacy and anonymity while providing a secure and efficient method for communication with Air Traffic Services, Operations Support, or other authorized entities.”

By using Smart Contracts, NASA researchers also want to ensure that certificates are secured and communication channels with high bandwidth are available. The authority has already presented a prototype in its paper:

“This framework features certificate authority, smart contract support, and higher-bandwidth communication channels for private information that may be used for secure communication between any specific aircraft and any particular authorized member, sharing data in accordance with the terms specified in the form of smart contracts. The prototype demonstrates how this method can be economically and rapidly deployed in a scalable modular environment.”

As the basis for the prototype, NASA intends to cooperate with the Hyperledger Fabric Certificate Authority (CA). The NASA blockchain will differ from the Bitcoin blockchain. It is further said that NASA’s solution should be privacy oriented and also uses different ledgers to enable privatized data collections.

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NASA had previously granted 330 thousand dollars to a professor at the University of Akron, to support research on ethereum blockchain tech to automatically detect floating debris. This shows that NASA is furthermore trying to explore blockchain for technological improvements.