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Author Topic: Asteroid mining company Planetary Resources acquired by blockchain firm  (Read 174 times)
Hydrogen
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November 03, 2018, 05:58:54 AM
Merited by paxmao (2), BitHodler (1)
 #1

Quote
WASHINGTON — Planetary Resources Inc., once a high-flying company backed by billionaires with aspirations to mine asteroids, only to later suffer funding problems, has been acquired by a blockchain company, the firms announced Oct. 31.

Planetary Resources said in a statement that it was acquired by ConsenSys, Inc. in an “asset-purchase transaction.” The companies did not disclose specific terms of the agreement. Chris Lewicki, the president and chief executive of Planetary Resources, and Brian Israel, the company’s general counsel, will join ConsenSys as part of the deal.

ConsenSys describes itself as a “blockchain venture production studio focused on building and scaling tools, disruptive startups, and enterprise software products powered by decentralized technology, specifically Ethereum.” Ethereum itself is a decentralized computing platform best known for supporting a cryptocurrency called Ether similar to the better-known bitcoin.

ConsenSys was founded by Joseph Lubin, one of the co-developers of Ethereum, in 2015. It said it has more than 1,100 employees on six continents. ConsenSys has more than three dozen “spokes,” or companies working on various projects that make use of Ethereum, including financial management company Balance, journalism platform Civil and gaming company Virtue Poker.

In a statement, Lubin said that Planetary Resources’ expertise in space would be folded into ConsenSys. “Bringing deep space capabilities into the ConsenSys ecosystem reflects our belief in the potential for Ethereum to help humanity craft new societal rule systems through automated trust and guaranteed execution,” he said, referring to the “smart contracts” enabled by Ethereum. “And it reflects our belief in democratizing and decentralizing space endeavors to unite our species and unlock untapped human potential.”

Lubin didn’t disclose how specifically Planetary Resources fit into his company other than that he would be “sharing our plans and how to join us on this journey in the months ahead.”

Planetary Resources first announced its asteroid mining plans in 2012 after three years in stealth mode. The company’s original vision called for prospecting near Earth asteroids for water ice that could later be extracted and then sold as propellant. “I think we’ll have propellant depots in operation within the decade,” Eric Anderson, the co-founder and original co-chairman of the company, said in a 2012 interview.

Anderson, best known in the space industry as the co-founder and chairman of space tourism company Space Adventures, established the company with Peter Diamandis, founder of the X Prize Foundation. The company’s initial investors featured a group of wealthy individuals, including Google co-founder Larry Page and chairman Eric Schmidt, Ross Perot Jr., and Charles Simonyi, the former Microsoft executive who flew to the International Space Station twice as a client of Space Adventures. Richard Branson later invested in the company, as did the government of Luxembourg’s SpaceResources.lu initiative.

The company developed a series of cubesats to serve as technology demonstrators for future asteroid prospectors. The first, Arkyd-3, was lost in the October 2014 Antares launch failure. A second, Arkyd-3R, was deployed from the ISS in July 2015, followed by Arkyd-6 in January on an Indian Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle.

By the time Arkyd-6 was in orbit demonstrating its mid-wave infrared imager, though, the company was in financial difficulties. Planetary Resources made was industry sources said were substantial layoffs early this year when it was unable to close a funding round.

Lewicki said in a March interview the lead in that planned funding round was an unnamed “major global mining company” that delayed an investment it planned to make last year for budget reasons. “We just have to adjust everything and find the right timing and the right value proposition,” he said then.

In the statement about the ConsenSys acquisition, Lewicki and Israel offered few details about Planetary Resources’ future. Israel, a former State Department lawyer who worked on issues such as the Outer Space Treaty, suggested that the company could leverage ConsenSys’ technology for space commerce.

“Ethereum smart contract functionality is a natural solution for private-ordering and commerce in space — the only domain of human activity not ordered around territorial sovereignty — in which a diverse range of actors from a growing number of countries must coordinate and transact,” Israel said.

“I am proud of our team’s extraordinary accomplishments, grateful to our visionary supporters, and delighted to join ConsenSys in building atop our work to expand humanity’s economic sphere of influence into the solar system,” Lewicki said in the statement.

In a comment attached to the statement on the Planetary Resources’ website, one person asked if the ConsenSys acquisition would allow for alternative “tokenized” investment into Planetary Resources using Ethereum. “That’s a possibility that could be enabled by the new venture,” Lewicki responded. “Stay tuned!”


https://spacenews.com/asteroid-mining-company-planetary-resources-acquired-by-blockchain-firm/

....

Ethereum hasn't had the best run thus far in 2018. It is nice to see ETH based enterprises pushing the technology, associating themselves with ambitious and futuristic plans like asteroid mining. I like that someone seems optimistic and positive about its future and is taking the bullish route on the future of crypto markets.

That said does anyone get a feeling this asteroid mining announcement parallels cases where corporations announced vaporware "blockchain projects" in an effort to boost their stock price? I can't recall much being invested in fleshing out how asteroid mining is expected to work in principle. There is a vague outline but afaik most of the key details and problems with it remain unresolved. Hopefully they can figure it out and hit their 10 year timeline.

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November 05, 2018, 09:19:51 AM
Merited by dbshck (2)
 #2

That said does anyone get a feeling this asteroid mining announcement parallels cases where corporations announced vaporware "blockchain projects" in an effort to boost their stock price? I can't recall much being invested in fleshing out how asteroid mining is expected to work in principle. There is a vague outline but afaik most of the key details and problems with it remain unresolved. Hopefully they can figure it out and hit their 10 year timeline.

You've answered yourself with the first paragraph

Quote
WASHINGTON — Planetary Resources Inc., once a high-flying company backed by billionaires with aspirations to mine asteroids, only to later suffer funding problems, has been acquired by a blockchain company, the firms announced Oct. 31.

Planetary Resources said in a statement that it was acquired by ConsenSys, Inc. in an “asset-purchase transaction.” The companies did not disclose specific terms of the agreement. Chris Lewicki, the president and chief executive of Planetary Resources, and Brian Israel, the company’s general counsel, will join ConsenSys as part of the deal.

So they've spent millions, got nothing done, got acquired by another company....will spend millions get nothing done...

All they have done is launch an exploration model that took some photos, nothing even closely related to land on an asteroid, change its path, either bring it down to earth or stabilize its trajectory.
And this is a bit disturbing, imagine having a few hundred 10k tons asteroids circling earth, and some going the wrong way.

Anyhow, I don't see any connection that can be established here between asteroid mining and blockchain.
Hype to rise some moar money  Grin



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November 05, 2018, 10:22:47 AM
 #3

Ethereum has always been one of the most interesting infrastructures for enterprises, due to smart contracts. A lot fo more use cases can be developed with smart contracts than with Bitcoin. So it will be natural to see it chosen by enterprises. Raising funds seems to not be excluded with an ICO model...

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November 05, 2018, 01:16:11 PM
 #4

Many blockchain projects are associated with ambitious and futuristic plans, because for such plans to manifest, there needs to be chance for a lot of collaboration between industries and businesses (smart contracts). And things will move along much faster thanks to instantaneous transactions.

It makes sense from an idealistic standpoint, but a lot of that is just good marketing done for more speculative value. It sounds good. Who knows though?
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November 05, 2018, 02:48:46 PM
Merited by stompix (1)
 #5

Today, only the lazy has not yet created a project with blockchain technology and is not trying to realize his idea with the help of ICO. In today's real world, all who at least as it is understood in the crypto currency are combined into groups and begin to promote their delusional product under a beautiful name and with a beautifully written white book. in 99% of cases, projects will never find their application in the real world because they are not necessary or such projects already exist.
If someone decided to take advantage of this wave of ICO and run a block network for the production of asteroids - I'm sure that this idea will not break in the first year. It's just another money laundering, because it's fashionable now.

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November 05, 2018, 06:23:05 PM
 #6

Ethereum has always been one of the most interesting infrastructures for enterprises, due to smart contracts. A lot fo more use cases can be developed with smart contracts than with Bitcoin. So it will be natural to see it chosen by enterprises.
Ethereum is the best option to build on, and there is nothing that comes even close to the programmability and overall economical support that Ethereum offers, not even TRON, NEO, EOS, and so forth.

The only downside is that it needs to find a way to scale far beyond what it is capable of right now. The more that runs on top of it, the more network congestion there is during peak usage moments, and thus the higher the fees.

I must say that I was quite hostile towards Ethereum, but I actually see its advantages. It doesn't even compete with Bitcoin for utility, neither does it compete with Bitcoin for hashrate. No reason to be worried.

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November 05, 2018, 07:34:22 PM
 #7

I understand that for this new and promising industry in the extraction of mineral resources on asteroids, investors will be attracted using smart contracts on the ethereum network. Very interesting, but risky activity. However, the future is in such activities. On Earth, the reserves of natural resources are depleted. One must either go deep into the earth, or look for reserves of natural minerals in space. The most affordable, is to look for them on large pebbles, which themselves fly to us from far space.

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November 05, 2018, 07:34:25 PM
 #8

Blockchain people are desperately trying to find a use case for their technology, and as the result we get sometimes hilarious projects like "blockchain-powered AI with machine learning in VR". Asteroid mining will become a reality, but after decades or maybe even hundreds of years. Anyone investing in that company is taking insane risk that is most likely not worth the profit.

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November 06, 2018, 10:32:31 AM
 #9

Raising funds seems to not be excluded with an ICO model...

Tokens going to 0 cents can't be excluded also, or rather then that is far more probable than seeing a real asteroid getting mined.
Don't forget that we talk about a business that run out of money once, a lot of money!!!

Today, only the lazy has not yet created a project with blockchain technology and is not trying to realize his idea with the help of ICO. In today's real world, all who at least as it is understood in the crypto currency are combined into groups and begin to promote their delusional product under a beautiful name and with a beautifully written white book. in 99% of cases, projects will never find their application in the real world because they are not necessary or such projects already exist.

So, what is your blockchain project?  Grin
I must admit I'm to lazy for it and also I know I will probably run even a good idea into the ground but who knows...
Has anyone started an ICO on labeling sheets of toilet paper via the blockchain to prevent water pollution?

On Earth, the reserves of natural resources are depleted. One must either go deep into the earth, or look for reserves of natural minerals in space. The most affordable, is to look for them on large pebbles, which themselves fly to us from far space.

Not even close....
The only thing we might run out of is oil and gas and just think how much they will cost to bring them to earth.
Already transport is far more costly in some places than actual extraction.

Now imagine the number of rockets needed to bring down to earth 90 millions barrels of oil ...a day!!!

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November 06, 2018, 11:13:44 AM
 #10

@BitHodler

Yep, me too I was like Anti-ETH (for no real reason, I just don't like Vitalik) but I have to admit ETH/Smart contracts will be the major player to adapt the blockchain technology in our daily life. I know scaling was a problem for ETH but isn't it resolved since? (With Plasma or)

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Don't forget that we talk about a business that run out of money once, a lot of money!!!
I didn't know about it.

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November 09, 2018, 11:01:59 AM
 #11

I understand they want to go big however asteroid mining is so far away right now that probably the founder will not be alive by the time humanity can actually mine any asteroids. Is it really smart to make purchases like this? I mean shouldn't they focus on getting bigger by acquiring other blockchain based software companies first? They are big I will agree to that as a blockchain software company built in 2015 they are one of the earliest ones and most successful ones however no matter how big they get they will have competition so why not take out the competition by buying them out like the big silicon valley companies do? This new purchase seems like a waste of money, I can't see this new company helping them in any way at all and it was just money spent badly.
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November 09, 2018, 11:11:19 AM
 #12

That said does anyone get a feeling this asteroid mining announcement parallels cases where corporations announced vaporware "blockchain projects" in an effort to boost their stock price? I can't recall much being invested in fleshing out how asteroid mining is expected to work in principle. There is a vague outline but afaik most of the key details and problems with it remain unresolved. Hopefully they can figure it out and hit their 10 year timeline.

You've answered yourself with the first paragraph

Quote
WASHINGTON — Planetary Resources Inc., once a high-flying company backed by billionaires with aspirations to mine asteroids, only to later suffer funding problems, has been acquired by a blockchain company, the firms announced Oct. 31.

Planetary Resources said in a statement that it was acquired by ConsenSys, Inc. in an “asset-purchase transaction.” The companies did not disclose specific terms of the agreement. Chris Lewicki, the president and chief executive of Planetary Resources, and Brian Israel, the company’s general counsel, will join ConsenSys as part of the deal.

So they've spent millions, got nothing done, got acquired by another company....will spend millions get nothing done...

All they have done is launch an exploration model that took some photos, nothing even closely related to land on an asteroid, change its path, either bring it down to earth or stabilize its trajectory.
And this is a bit disturbing, imagine having a few hundred 10k tons asteroids circling earth, and some going the wrong way.

Anyhow, I don't see any connection that can be established here between asteroid mining and blockchain.
Hype to rise some moar money  Grin




For me its just another scam.. get money and do nothing.
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November 09, 2018, 12:32:36 PM
 #13

Asteroid mining is just another fantasy.It can be achieved after 100 years probably...
The guys at ConsenSys have to continue with ethereum mining and leave the plans of asteroid mining to the Hollywood science fiction movie directors. Grin

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November 09, 2018, 05:51:00 PM
 #14

Asteroid mining is just another fantasy.It can be achieved after 100 years probably...
The guys at ConsenSys have to continue with ethereum mining and leave the plans of asteroid mining to the Hollywood science fiction movie directors. Grin

I agree. Japan sent first "rower" on asteroid only few months ago. This is far far away future. And price of Gold will have to be 100+ times more expensive as it is now.

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November 09, 2018, 08:25:03 PM
 #15

While ethereum is indeed not in its best shape and smart contracts are a nice idea without a truly user-friendly implementation, this union sounds potentially interesting. Perhaps, crypto investors might get attracted to space programs so that new funds are obtained for the latter. Mining can become profitable on asteriods if very valuable materials are found and the problems of getting the mined stuff back to Earth are solved. Asteroids are also believed to be potentially good as a first step of human space colonization once some problems like radiation are solved as well. These are risky things to invest in, but many think the same of cryptocurrencies, so it might be worth a shot.

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November 16, 2018, 06:35:32 PM
 #16

Mining can become profitable on asteriods if very valuable materials are found and the problems of getting the mined stuff back to Earth are solved.


Come on. Only way that asteroid mining become profitable is if they find there a cure for aging or cancer or something and mine that.  There is no mineral worth that much to be worth being mined in space. None!

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BitHodler
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November 16, 2018, 07:12:58 PM
 #17

@BitHodler

Yep, me too I was like Anti-ETH (for no real reason, I just don't like Vitalik) but I have to admit ETH/Smart contracts will be the major player to adapt the blockchain technology in our daily life. I know scaling was a problem for ETH but isn't it resolved since? (With Plasma or)
Ethereum has a few upgrades ready to be implemented, but they are being delayed continuously. I wouldn't count on anything to change in this regard, especially with how it potentially could drag on for a couple of more years.

The bear market means less network congestion on the Ethereum network, and thus less desire from the side of developers to rush their upgrades. Upgrade delays are mostly an indication of unstable software.

What stings me the most is the fact that there is no hard cap on Ethereum. Their only effort to counter inflation is to lower block rewards from 3 to 2ETH, but still, not a hard cap. Once they get around that, I'll dig in and invest.

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