SpaceX accepts dogecoin as payment to launch a lunar mission next year

Space

LONDON, ENGLAND – APRIL 25: In this photo illustration of the litecoin, ripple and ethereum cryptocurrency ‘altcoins’ sit arranged for a photograph on April 25, 2018 in London, England. Cryptocurrency markets began to recover this month following a massive crash during the first quarter of 2018, seeing more than $550 billion wiped from the total market capitalisation. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

(Reuters) — SpaceX will launch the “DOGE-1 Mission to the Moon” in the first quarter of next year, with Elon Musk’s commercial rocket company accepting the meme-inspired cryptocurrency dogecoin as payment.

Geometric Energy Corporation announced the dogecoin-funded mission on Sunday, with the statement not disclosing the mission’s financial value.

“We’re excited to launch DOGE-1 to the Moon!”, SpaceX Vice President of Commercial Sales Tom Ochinero was quoted as saying in the statement released by Geometric Energy. “This mission will demonstrate the application of cryptocurrency beyond Earth orbit and set the foundation for interplanetary commerce”.

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Musk said on Twitter in April that SpaceX was going to put a “literal Dogecoin on the literal moon”.

Dogecoin lost more than a third of its price on Sunday, after Musk called it a ‘hustle’ during his guest-host spot on the “Saturday Night Live” comedy sketch TV show.

Musk’s tweets this year turned the once-obscure digital currency, which began as a social media joke, into a speculator’s dream.

Electric carmaker Tesla Inc, where Musk is CEO, said in February it bought $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin and would soon accept it as a form of payment for its electric cars, a large stride toward mainstream acceptance that sent bitcoin soaring to a record high of nearly $62,000.

Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Daniel Wallis

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