Bitcoin is rising in more ways than one. On Monday, as the cryptocurrency reached a price of $9,295 to reverse previous declines, cryptocurrency mining firm Miner One launched a rig into space to harvest new coins from the depths of the stratosphere — a not-too-subtle nod to the community term that a well-performing cryptocurrency is going “to the moon.” The firm, which plans to build an eco-friendly mining center in Northern Sweden, managed to retrieve the craft from a Luthianian field after a two-hour mission.
The Miner One team used a hydrogen balloon to lift the rig up toward the stars. The carbon fiber capsule contained an application-specific integrated circuit, a Raspberry Pi 3, a battery, a satellite phone, a GoPro Hero 5, and a souvenir metal “bitcoin” for a competition winner. Once it reached over 100,000 feet from the ground, the circuit was activated and linked via phone to the ground. As it moved through the stratosphere, falling air pressure caused the balloon to expand from 2.2 meters to 10 meters in diameter. The balloon was then destroyed and a parachute was deployed, with three independent telemetry systems transmitting data so the crew could retrieve the craft.
The stunt comes at a time when Bitcoin is recovering from a three-month slump, and questions circle around whether the new recovery is here to stay. Miner One CEO Pranas Slusnys said in a statement that “we are bullish on bitcoin because it remains the world’s most popular and proven application of blockchain technology, and we see growing interest and adoption, despite recent market doldrums.”
He’s not alone. David Drake, chairman and founder of investment firm LDJ Captial, said last month that he sees Bitcoin reaching $30,000. Dominik Zynis, co-founder of Wings, a community of initial coin offering backers, predicted a crash to $2,000 this year before a similar rise. Trevor Gerszt, CEO of cryptocurrency investment firm Coin IRA, foresees a similar move past the $11,000 mark.
Miner One is building its mining center based on a crowdfunding venture. The team plans to start mining within three to five months of reaching the soft cap of 3,000 Ethereum coins, and the current round is set to end on May 5.
Bitcoin may have slumped from its December 2017 highs, but its future potential looks astronomical.