Russian scientists Igor Ashurbeyl had announced the idea of creating a space nation named Asgardia in 2016 and this week the "kingdom" marked its beginning by launching a nanosatellite named Asgardia-1. Humanity has long imagined the idea of creating a community, where they will be living in perfect harmony devoid of Earthly evils, such as poverty, classism and violence. This very idea had motivated the Russian scientist to work towards developing Asgardia.
The "kingdom" marked its beginning earlier this week by launching a nanosatellite, Asgardia-1, which is barely the size of a loaf of bread.
"I promised there would be a launch," Ashurbeyl told CNN, "We selected NASA as a reliable partner because we have to meet the commitments that I made 13 months ago."
The nanosat, which is smaller than the size of a bread loaf, was aboard NASA's cargo vessel OA-8 Antares-Cygnus headed to the International Space Station (ISS). The satellite consists of 0.5 TB data from 18,000 Asgardian citizens, who have sent their families' pictures along with the nation's flag, constitution and coat of arms, informed CNN.
After the OA-8 Antares-Cygnus reaches ISS, Asgardia-1 will be pushed out from the cargo vessel into low-orbit space, where it'll stay for months before burning out.
The name of the space nation has been inspired by the mythological city of 'Asgard' or the country of Gods, which is quite familiar to us by now, thanks to Marvel series Thor. Asgardia is now open for citizenship to anyone above the age of 18. Even convicts cleared of their charges can become a citizen of this space nation.
As per its website, the main of the project is to craft a "mirror of humanity in space but without Earthly division into states, religions and nations".
As of now, the United States has the largest number of Asgardians, with over 19,000 members. Among 134,806 citizens, around 7,000 Indians have also signed up to be the citizens of Asgardia.
The space nation also aims to be recognised as a country by the United Nations, for which it is working on developing a constitution, government, currency and territory. "Asgardia's Constitution has already been accepted; its cryptocurrency, the Solar, is registered at the European Union Intellectual Property Office; and the government formation is underway."
Asgardia's team eventually wants to create habitable platforms in low-Earth orbits that are located 161-321km from where the International Space Station is in space.