Space n’Traders: Space travel ‘could force people to trade using planets’

Space n'Traders: Space travel ‘could force people to trade using planets’

An entrepreneur has said “interstellar banking” could become a necessity when space travel is a reality, as currency would be “worthless”

Money could become impossible once humans are living among the stars, according to the entrepreneur behind an ambitious private fusion experiment.

Richard Dinan, the CEO of Pulsar Fusion, took Daily Star Online on a tour around his project – a prototype of a fusion-powered rocket thruster that he wants to take humans to Mars and beyond.

He says nuclear fusion power will be key in making rockets that can travel much faster and much further.

But he predicts that when we become interstellar, traditional money will cease to make sense and there is no obvious answer to this problem.

Earth from Space
Humanity will one day venture far beyond our solar system according to Richard Dinan (Image: Getty stock)

It is not too hard for Washington DC to trade with Sydney at a 16-hour hour time difference, but if we travelled through space to another star system and this became 1,000 years, a whole new challenge arises.

Explaining the conundrum, Richard, a former Made In Chelsea cast member, said: “Money depends on you experiencing time at the same rate as the person you’re trading with.

“And if you come back and a thousand years have passed on Earth that’s not really helpful.

“But currency is dependant on us travelling at the same speed. If I take off to Mars at a quarter of the speed of light I’m going to suffer massive inflation.

“My currency is not relativistic, I need something I can trade in space if I’m going to go meaningful distances.”

Explaining it in layman’s terms, Richard added: “I don’t want to come back [from space] and find out that my great-great-great-grandson has p***ed away the money.”

Interstellar travel
Interstellar travel will cause relativity to come into play in the finance world (Image: Getty)

It costs thousands of dollars to launch a kilogram of material into space and so it’s unlikely people would be able to trade with physical money.

“You don’t even want currency, it is weight in space,” he said. “You don’t want to take gold, you want to take tritium [used in nuclear fusion reactions] or fuel.”

To solve the problem, Richard suggests “interstellar real estate” could come into force.

Finances
It would be uniquely challenging to trade with Millenium-long time differences (Image: Getty)

“You could buy planets,” he explained.

“Maybe a trading piece is little planets because the planets closer to us have some value because they’re reachable and if you lose 1,000 years relative to somebody else than the planets further out become obtainable because our technology has moved on.

“So they would have increased in value the more there is a lag of relativity.

“It is an interesting topic – interstellar banking.”

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