Asgardia is one of the strangest yet exciting experiments relating to technology and space exploration.
The first virtual space nation is an attempt that looks more like a sci-fi story than reality. This miniature satellite named Asgardia-1 was launched on Sunday from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility Centre in Virginia.
Its official statement read, "We are delighted to announce that the Asgardia space kingdom has now established its sovereign territory in space."
Now it somehow reminds me of those iconic lines by Neil Armstrong, "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind."
But the questions is, how giant is this leap? Let's try and find out through quick facts.
A milk carton-sized satellite when assembled turns into a territory of the "space kingdom" which is known as Asgardia-1. More than 300,000 people signed up from around the world to take part in it. However, the first facility which this virtual nation is providing is to safe keep your data from Earthly dangers and government.
When you read about the data privacy of Asgardia, you'd come to know that these privileges are still subject to earthly copyright laws that are taken from Austria.
The long-term vision of Asgardia is to make human settlements possible in space, on the Moon to be precise.
At present, Asgardia is a small satellite inside a Cygnus spacecraft. In a month, Cygnus will move to a higher altitude where it'll deploy the 'nation-in-a-box' into orbit.
When you open the official website of Asgardia, you will notice that the first virtual space nation has already announced its primary parliamentary election.
A Russian scientist, Igor Ashurbeylia who was born in September 1963 is the mastermind behind this mission. He is also the founder of Aerospace International Research Center, who proposed this idea in October 2016.
Asgardia having a statehood isn't acknowledged by other countries and the United Nations for that matter, because it isn't possible for humans to live in there, so that's why it doesn't fit the definition of a nation.
Ashurbeyli is quite serious about this mission, and he is now headed to Washington to make it an UN-endorsed nation.
The successful launch of Asgardia-1 will either mark the beginning of a new era in extra-planetary citizenship program, or it could be possible that it may slowly fade into darkness.
Why are you laughing? It's a fact. You tell me, what'd you do in the space if given a chance?
That's all, folks!