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Data Centers on the Moon with Lonestar CEO Chris Stott.

Lonestar Data Holdings made history with the successful test of a data storage concept from the surface of the Moon. Find out more from CEO Chris Stott.



Deep Space


Lonestar Data Holding’s Independence payload was delivered as part of the successful Intuitive Machine’s IM-1 Odysseus Nova-C lander mission that touched down on the south pole of the Moon on February 22, 2024.  From the surface of the Moon, Lonestar successfully completed the first ever data center test in their proof-of-concept demonstration. Lonestar’s CEO and Cofounder Chris Stott shares with us the journey from idea to reality.

You can connect with Chris on LinkedIn and learn more about Lonestar Data Holdings on their website.

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[MUSIC] Welcome to T-Minus Deep Space from N2K Networks.

I'm Maria Farmazes, host of the T-Minus Space Daily Podcast.

Deep Space includes extended interviews and bonus content for a deeper look into some of the topics that we cover on our daily program.

[MUSIC] And on February 22nd, 2024, Intuitive Machines' IM1 Odysseus Nova Sea Lander mission landed on the South Pole of the Moon.

It was the first successful soft landing by a commercial space company, and it was part of the NASA Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program, also known as CLIPS.

One of the payloads on board Odysseus was Lone Star Data Holdings' Independence demonstration.

From the surface of the moon, Lone Star successfully completed the first ever data center test.

I spoke to Lone Star CEO and co-founder Chris Stott about the journey from idea to reality.

[MUSIC] >> My name is Chris Stott, founder and CEO of Lone Star Data Holdings.

>> Chris, I greatly appreciate your time today.

I have to say congratulations on a successful test.

I mean, that has got to feel amazing.

>> It does, thank you.

And what a great team effort from all of our team at Lone Star and our Lunar Access provider Intuitive Machines and SpaceX on the launch, and everything came together wonderfully.

Thank you.

It's just lunar space and from the surface of the moon.

Data centers on the moon just went from science fiction to science fact.

>> It did make me think of foundation a little bit when I heard about it, which is just made me so happy.

I'm like, this is such a cool idea.

Well, thank you.

One of our investors is Seldo Capital named after Harry Seldo.

>> I just made that connection.

Thank you for making that connection.

[LAUGH] That's so great.

To me, the use case makes a lot of sense if you're a foundation nerd.

You're like, this makes a lot of sense.

However, I don't want to put words in your mouth.

[LAUGH] Could you, I guess, give me the pitch?

I've been reading a lot about your company.

I'm super keen, but I'd love to hear it from you if you don't mind.

>> No, absolutely.

We know lunar data centers or data centers on the moon sounds crazy.

Sounds lunatic, right?

Every pun intended.

But this is customer driven.

This isn't technology push, it's demand pull.

We're just responding to a group of customers who amazingly came to us and said, we need your help.

We're in severe pain.

We need somewhere to keep our data that is safe, secure, accessible, and that works under data sovereignty laws.

And so we did, we took a long, we looked underwater and we looked at the mountains and deserts, jungles, and anywhere on the earth that we looked, it has network intrusion issues.

That's people tapping cable fiber and putting bad things in and out of wireless of things.

And it's all the way through to then nation state attacks.

Attacks on immutable data, ransomware, human error.

Then throw in climate and climate change and throw in storms and more.

And then throw in war.

Here we are on earth when every day the human race, all eight billion plus of us, we create 2.5 quintillion bytes of new information.

Every day more than yesterday.

That's the equivalent, that's like a thousand petabytes a day and exabyte a day.

But another way of looking at that, that's at 1 million MacBook Pros every 24 hours.

And that clock goes to one second past midnight and it's open up the boxes of another million MacBook Pros.

And this is doubling every two years.

So we created down here and we thought, okay, where should we keep it that's nice and safe, secure, accessible, and works under data sovereignty?

That's what took us to the moon.

>> Not a small challenge to take on.

I mean, the pitch alone is so great but also it's like you did it.

So that's just, it's amazing to be talking to you right now after this success.

I actually kind of want to go back to that a little bit.

Can you tell me a little bit about the experience?

I kind of want you to relish the memory a little bit.

>> No, it was awesome.

We had our entire team online because we're spread around the country.

We have Steve was in Long Beach, Mark was up in San Mateo, both in California.

We had, he's our Chief Operating Officer, President.

We had Carol, our CFO up in Manhattan, Dell, our chair of advisory board and former general counsel over there in DC.

We had Jim and Will and myself down here, our headquarters in Florida.

And so we're on our mission control, the JF Honeycutt Mission Control.

And so it was fantastic.

We sat there, we were watching, we were tied in to watch with Intuitive Machines.

And ironically, we were watching Intuitive Machines.

So we were not watching the news feeds, right?

We're in Mission Control, we've got headsets on, we're watching everything.

And so we missed all of the speculation that was going on in the media, right?

And so we were just like watching our friends and colleagues and Intuitive Machines were amazing by the way, incredible group of people.

And that was their super strength, wasn't it?

That was the absolute super strength, their super power was mission operations.

And so they pulled it off too, amazingly, right?

And they really came together and did that in incredibly difficult circumstances.

And they made it look easy.

The first ever soft landing on the moon by a private company on their first attempt, right?

Every superpower in history failed, including ours on their first attempts.

From us in the United States to the Soviet Union to the Chinese, Indians, everyone failed.

Not Intuitive Machines, not entrepreneurs.

Fantastic stuff.

So then we were watching this whole thing, we're like, oh my gosh, oh my gosh, oh my gosh.

And then we were tracking the different ground stations around the world, seeing what was going on, looking at, I mean, just watching the whole thing.

And then just that moment of, and if you watch the eyes of the people in the room at Intuitive Machines, you could see it on their faces.

Harm professionalism.

And that's what you want.

All right.

And if they don't look panic, we'd have panic, but they'd never look panic not once.

And they were really good.

Tim Crane, that team, amazing team of people.

Michael Leakey and Colonel Fisher and Steve Altamus was in the room.

It was all, woof, Daniel Springer and the team.

That was fantastic.

Going on and on.

So I was sitting there with James Burns Montante, our chief engineer, and Will Hawkins, our chief data officer and chief information security officer.

We were both glued to have our big projectors and mission control watching everything.

It was a moment.

And then, because the week before we'd had our moment when we tested everything live in Cislunaspace on the roots of the moon, right?

And then the week later, a couple of days later, the following Thursday, we got the word through that our tests have been conducted successfully as well from the surface of the moon.

In the last few hours that the lander was getting sunlight and Intuitive Machines were able to pull that off for us.

And that was fantastic.

Again, you all have been working on this for years.

I can only begin to imagine the thrill of knowing that all of that had been a success.

It was a wonderful moment.

She had that success with the team and everyone.

It was incredible.

I can absolutely believe it.

It's truly amazing.

And hearing about it second, third hand here, I was just like, that is just so cool.

The vision that your company has for the long-term future is something I'm super curious about because the, I mean, to me, it's like the ultimate air gap is to put something on.

Yeah, I can get.

Yeah, vacuum duct, exactly.

It's our chief operating officer, Mark Sess.


Oh, that's awesome.

It makes a lot of sense to me.

I mean, we're not just doing, I mean, it is very cool.

We're not just doing this because we can.

There are a lot of really interesting potential use cases.

Can you walk me through some of those?

Yeah, I mean, we'll think of it this way.

It's, I mean, we're a vault tool using apes and we're taking that next step forward, right?

Small steps and giant leaps.

I mean, we talk about a data loss so bad that happened 2000 years ago, right?

It's still taught in our schools.

We still feel the shock of the loss of the Library of Alexandria.

I mean, burnt down to the ground.

Don't forget by Julius Caesar's troops in the middle of the Roman Civil War, right?

On purpose.

And so you look at something like this and imagine what happened today.

Where would we be?

Hey, you and I wouldn't be able to talk.

There'd be no power stations.

There'd be no internet.

There'd be no communications.

There'd be no nothing.

So where would we be?

And we've come so close so many times to that actually happening.

And you're in cybersecurity.

You know how close we've come a couple of times.

Our customers first came to us in April 2018 after not Petia had gotten loose in 2017.


It was, it was, that was the first ever weapon of mass destruction cyber weapon that the Russians unleashed and they got loose and networks around the world.

Musk, FedEx, lots of articles and books at Sandworm written about that by Andy and then Nicole's book, this is how they tell me the world ends.

Fascinate, right?

And that's why those customers came to us.

They said, oh my gosh, what are we supposed to do?

Where do we keep this?

How do we take a proactive step forward and make sure this actually works?

And that's our goal is twofold.

Number one, that people look out at night and they see the moon and they go, oh my gosh, our data is safe.

The moon is such a perfect place, Maria, that if it wasn't there, we'd have to build it for data storage, right?

It's incredible.

The free cooling, it's so environmentally compliant, the solar power, the legal regime which enables all of this to happen.

And that's a huge thing all the way through to what we really want to do.

And this vision that we see, the second part of that is we see, we want the moon to be global backup, global refresh, global restore, right?

And why not?

It's there.

It's Earth's largest satellite.

Let's put it to use.

We'll be right back after this quick break.

And I know that there's more that's coming.

I mean, you all are busy.

You must be in the middle of a lot of work for the next mission.

Oh, yeah, we're just waiting on the timing on the next mission, our payload is built.

So this is, this first one was our independence payload where we transmitted the Declaration of Independence and pull back, refresh, restore, pull back the Constitution and the Bill of Rights as the first ever documents in human history transmitted off-planet for disaster recovery storage, right?

Not just in flights and the moon, but on the moon.

And more thank you because a lot of people said, "Why are you doing that?"

And I'm like, "You're kidding me.

I'm an American citizen."

Yeah, I would say we're American.

That's why.

The shine of light in the darkness, the world's not exactly in a great place right now.

Let's remind everybody what free men and women can do, what American entrepreneurs can do, right?

I mean, let's just get out there and just remind everyone, you know, kind of why we have these republics and democracies around the world just a little bit.

And then our next one is our freedom mission.

And that is eight terabytes of storage.

That's a polo fire chip built for us by a company called Skycorp.

And that has been fully tested, thermal vacs, EMI testing, vibration testing.

It is literally sitting on a shelf at Intuitor Machines in Houston, waiting to be integrated onto their second lunar mission.

Both of these missions were sold out, by the way, with customers.

I believe it.

And revenue.

I believe it.


Yeah, I mean, I'm so eagerly looking forward to seeing what happens.

I mean, when a physical data center on the moon is, I mean, that's just, again, like it makes my geek side go, wow, that's just blows my mind.

It was fascinating, isn't it?

I mean, people think, oh, because it's nothing like a terrestrial data center.

It'll be equivalent in its capabilities.

Because we've been for the last 60 years, we've been building and putting things in space that don't need people to go fix them.

And everything from helicopters on Mars, right, running Snapdragon chips and Ubuntu and Fython SSDs, all the way through to what we do at geostationary satellites that operate in a really awful radiation belt up in the Van Allen's geostationary orbit.

And so, yeah, these are super efficient, no moving parts.

I mean, our next payload runs at peak power of all of eight watts.


The space, we're really good at that.

We have to.

And so we're bringing the best of space and the best of Silicon Valley to actually tackle this huge problem that humanity has.

And how did we know it's a problem?

Because they're telling us, the customers are going, please help, help, help.

How soon can you get this done?


And so, yeah, so, and, but doing it under sovereignty laws, which is tremendous, which is why the moon works.

I mean, under the 1967 out of space treaty, the moon is not sovereign.

But when you land something, as we just did last week, that's intuitive, as we, America, the pejorative did last week, that's, that's that lander and its activities are under American jurisdiction, American regulation and American supervision under the 1967 treaty.

As are the Chinese landers that are up there and active.

I mean, people forget that the Chinese have been active on the lunar surface now for almost 1,900 days consecutively over on the far side of South Aiken basin claiming territory with a nibble without river.


I hope he doesn't lose track of that one.

That's a Changa formation.

Hands off to them.


And the Chinese even have a patent for lunar data centers.


So there's some competition coming over.

All right.


Always good to have a rival to keep you on your toes.

I could imagine, I'm thinking of edge computing also.

I mean, I know we're not there yet, but as we talk about the developing CIS lunar economy, which again, we're not there yet, but we're getting there.

I could imagine having a data center like the one that you all are building would make a lot of sense for edge computing for operations in CIS lunar space.


No, because we have to have edge with us to manage our storage.

And so on our next mission, we actually have edge processing customers on board running a whole suite of their software and doing a whole bunch of edge from the actual ultimate edge.

Back in December 21 and April 22, we actually loaded and ran the first ever software defined data center up on the International Space Station.

We did that taking over an existing computer made in space as all 3D printed with red-wise permission because they took them over.

And we did the first ever distributed ledger.

We did machine learning.

We did an adversarial art network.

I think like a very early version of some of the ones we see today, like Majerney and things like that.

We did a bunch of data storage and we ran that twice.

And of course, we did it in the middle of COVID and no one noticed.

Our show wasn't running then, so I apologize.

I wouldn't notice.

No, thank you.

It's interesting.

But your software, your payload had no mass.

And I'm like, no, it was software.

And that's the difference.

This is a data-defined future, a software-driven world.

And all we're doing is turning the moon into a massive storage device to handle all the data created by our race here on the planet.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

And it's amazing to think that, again, we will be doing edge computing with the moon involved, actually much more soon than I thought.

We did last week.

That was it.

Yeah, yeah.

That's true, isn't it?

Yeah, that is true.

That is, wow.

The future is amazing and we're living in it right now.

That's just so cool.

Chris, you have made my heart so happy just speaking to you about the cool things your company is doing.

I want to make sure I love to give my guests the podium before we conclude.

So if there's anything we didn't chat about that you wanted to mention, I want to make sure to give you that opportunity.

All right.

Well, number one, everyone listening, thank you for listening.

And please back up your data.



Go sign.

And I also want to say that we couldn't be doing this.

We have an incredible team of people at Lone Star, an amazing team of investors.

And go to our website, LoneStarLunar.com and check them all out.

But they are incredible.

They're visionary because the people who joined our team and made this happen did so out of faith.

And the investors who came in did so out of faith.


So when someone comes to you and says, "Please give me a couple of million dollars to go and put a data center on the moon."

And these guys went, "Hmm, okay.

Actually, we see it.

Let's go."


And the customers who were with us too, the state of Florida has been a tremendous customer.

And think of that.

One of the fastest growing states in our great union, in our great republic, taking the very avant-garde step, having the plan to go out and say, "Okay, we're going to try this.

We're going to do this."

You know, our big data centers are in Miami, our backups are in Winter Park.

And we've got a huge amount of data in the state that makes the state run from city to county to our state level.

And for them to say, "Right, we need to do something.

We need to be forward-looking.

We need to be the first state in the union to do this."

And they did it.

And they were our first customer.

And a fantastic group of people to work with too up in Tallahassee.

And the guys at Space Florida who made that happen, wow, just Frank DeBello and now Rob Long and his team have been absolutely tremendous.

And I know I'm missing people.

I should be thanking them.

But imagine that.

Sometimes government does work.

In a good way.

I love that.

Oh, gosh.

I've got the warm fuzzies.

It's a good feeling.

Chris, you've been a delight to speak to you.

Thank you so much.

And again, congratulations to you and your whole team on your great success.

May it continue and all the best to you.

Seriously, it's been a joy to speak to you.

I hope to see you on the min sometime.

It's it for T minus deep space for March 16th, 2024.

We'd always love to know what you think of this podcast.

You can email us at space@entuk.com or submit the survey in the show notes.

Your feedback ensures that we deliver the information that keeps you a step ahead in this rapidly changing space industry.

This episode was produced by Alice Carruth, mixing by Elliot Peltzman and Trey Hester with original music and sound design by Elliot Peltzman.

Our associate producer is Liz Stokes.

Our executive producer is Jen Iben.

Our VP is Brandon Karp.

And I'm Maria Vermazus.

Thanks for listening.

We'll see you next time.

[MUSIC PLAYING] (gentle music)

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