SpaceX to launch billboard satellite that plays ads and hopes ‘people don’t do something inappropriate’

‘Maybe Coca-Cola and Pepsi will fight over their logo and reclaim over each other’, Geometric Energy Corporation CEO Samuel Reid said

Adam Smith
Thursday 12 August 2021 14:21 BST
(AFP via Getty Images)
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Elon Musk’s SpaceX will put an advertising satellite in the sky where companies can display logos and other promoted content.

The space company is working with a Canadian startup Geometric Energy Corporation (GEC) to launch the satellite on a Falcon 9 rocket, which will release the advertising platform before the rocket reaches the moon.

Samuel Reid, CEO and co-founder of GEC, told Business Insider that the satellite would be released in 2022. People and companies would buy tokens to locate and design a pixel on the screen.

Five tokens affecting the pixels are purchasable: Beta and Rho for the advert’s placement on the screen, Gamma and Kappa for the colour and brightness, and XI for its duration. These tokens will be purchasable via cryptocurrencies.

"I’m trying to achieve something that can democratize access to space and allow for decentralized participation," Mr Reid said. "Hopefully, people don’t waste money on something inappropriate, insulting or offensive.

"There might be companies which want to depict their logo ... or it might end up being a bit more personal and artistic. Maybe Coca-Cola and Pepsi will fight over their logo and reclaim over each other,” he said.

It is currently unclear how large the ads will be, how many ads will be shown at any one time, the environmental impact of bright advertising on local flora and fauna, and the energy use of the satellite. Neither SpaceX nor GEC responded to The Independent’s request for comment before time of publication.

GEC is also the group behind the satellite Doge-1, which Mr Musk said would be the “first crypto in space” and the “first meme in space”.

The satellite will "obtain lunar-spatial intelligence from sensors and cameras", according to CNN. "This is not a joke," Reid said, but refused to comment further.

Dogecoin has “proven to be a fast, reliable, and cryptographically secure digital currency that operates when traditional banks cannot and is sophisticated enough to finance a commercial Moon mission in full," a press release sent in May 2021 read.

"It has been chosen as the unit of account for all lunar business between SpaceX and Geometric Energy Corporation and sets precedent for future missions to the Moon and Mars."

Since then, however, Elon Musk’s tweets – generally seen as market-movers in the crypto space – have failed to affect dogecoin’s performance.

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