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NASA Embraces the Bitcoin (BTC) Blockchain to Tackle Cyber Attacks on Aerospace

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NASA is reportedly looking at delving into the Bitcoin (BTC) Blockchain technology in a bid to crack down on cyberattacks affecting aerospace agents. The Blockchain technology is arguably the backbone of the booming Bitcoin (BTC) and the digital currency ecosystem. The technology has been regarded as a revolutionary way of holding or handling massive amounts of data, and because each strain of data is held in a different location, the records kept will be public and very easy to verify. Now more and more unanticipated applications for this cutting-edge technology have been explored.

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NASA Now Sees the Benefits of the Blockchain Initiative

The US space agency is now considering implementing Blockchain technology due to the amazing benefits that the endeavor presents. The new system to be implemented by NASA proposes to leverage an open-source industrial-level enterprise Blockchain pattern. According to NASA engineer Ronald Reisman:

“Blockchain-powered communication systems could provide the essential element when it comes to stopping service attacks on the air-traffic control system in the United States.”

The highly-anticipated ADS-B (Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast) system is slated to go live next year, although Reisman believes the proposed Blockchain solution is already at risk of a cyber attack.

Background Information for ADS-B

ADS-B is basically a surveillance technology where an aircraft can determine its position by means of satellite navigation ultimately allowing it to be effectively tracked. However, ADS-B doesn’t necessarily secure the flight plans of aircrafts’ and positions, which typically presents a number of problems. Having a Blockchain could actually be the solution, Reisman believes. Which is why NASA is preparing to use an open-source industrial-level permissioned Blockchain framework to tackle ADS-B’s vulnerabilities.

Implementing such a Blockchain architecture could help you to secure and improve communication lines between authorized agents before minimizing the risks of tech-savvy cybercriminals gaining easy access to the system. As per Reisman’s proposal, a “certificate authority will be used, as well as smart contract support, and a much higher-bandwidth communication channel” in a bid to make sure communication lines between an aircraft and an agent (particularly air traffic control) remains secure.

According to Reisman:

The system is set to leverage an industrial-level open-source permissioned Blockchain framework known as a Hyperledger Fabric in a bid to demonstrate potential solutions and technical issues that may threaten ADS-B adoption by Military, Corporate, and broader aircraft operators who don’t want their movements and operations to be discernible by the public.”

Hyperledger Fabric

A Hyperledger Fabric can be defined as a Blockchain developed separate from the fintech sector and designed primarily for enterprise usage. Although the approach proposed by Reisman isn’t yet perfected, it is typically based on the available technology. This move has been reported as a mark of approval regarding the readiness for a wider implementation of and usage for the Blockchain technology on a global scale.

Furthermore, it is also Reisman’s belief that the proposed prototype can be “rapidly and economically deployed” at scale. The NASA engineer also cited the usage of Hyperledger Fabric in other sectors besides the aerospace such as finance and others.

As per previous reports, Honeywell, a major aircraft manufacturer, is another industry giant to have expressed confidence in Blockchain applications in the aerospace industry.


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