SpaceX is going to put cryptocurrency on the moon, the company’s CEO Elon Musk has claimed.
Within four hours, the tweet had gained about 200,000 likes and 22,500 retweets.
It is not yet clear whether Musk was being serious, since the tweet was posted on April Fools’ Day. It is also not immediately apparent what he means by a literal coin because cryptocurrencies are intangible.
However, the idea is not without precedent. In March, dogecoin co-founder Billy Markus told Newsweek: “I think it would be really cool if he does literally send dogecoin to the moon on one of his rockets.”
“[It could be] something ‘figuratively literal’ like a picture of dogecoin, a flag with dogecoin on it, a physical token representing dogecoin … [or something] more literal, like a USB drive with a dogecoin wallet or a computer running dogecoin, would be cool!”
CNBC space reporter Michael Sheetz tweeted: “I know it’s April Fool’s but I don’t for a second question that he means this.”
Musk replied to the post, pointing out that the first object SpaceX sent into Earth orbit was a wheel of cheese.
Dogecoin surged in price immediately after Musk’s tweet. It was valued at $0.05 at 6:15am ET, but by 6:45am had risen to $0.069—an increase of 38 percent—before falling slightly.
Musk regularly posts tongue-in-cheek tweets about dogecoin, the cryptocurrency that was set up as a joke.
In February, its price rose by 50 percent after he tweeted “Dogecoin is the people’s crypto.” Other high-profile supporters include Kiss frontman Gene Simmons, who revealed that he had invested in the cryptocurrency that same month. Rapper Snoop Dogg and Jonas Brothers guitarist Kevin Jonas have also tweeted about it.
Despite its jokey origins—the coin is typically depicted with the shiba inu dog meme on its face, combined with the Comic Sans font—the total supply is worth around $8 billion.
Price tracking website Coinmarketcap says dogecoin has the 18th highest cryptocurrency market capitalization in the world, out of more than 4,500 it tracks.
Musk has not provided further details on the moon plan but, as he pointed out, Space X has blasted unorthodox objects into space.
In addition to the wheel of cheese, the company launched a sports car into orbit in 2018 in order to demonstrate the payload capabilities of its Falcon Heavy rocket.