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Bitcoin The Almighty Buck

Cryptocurrency Miners Are Using Old Tires to Power Their Rigs ( 79

Christopher Malmo, writing for Motherboard: An entrepreneurial cryptocurrency mining company has just announced an unusual deal: it has partnered with a tire-based waste-to-energy company in the United States to power its mining computers. Standard American Mining and PRTI, a tire "thermal demanufacturing" company based in North Carolina, are powering graphics cards-based mining equipment to earn a range of alternative cryptocurrencies like Ethereum. Basically, they take used tires and heat them to a precise temperature, resulting in components like steel (from belted tires), carbon black, and a burnable fuel. That fuel is the energy source driving turbines to make electricity, which powers an onsite cryptocurrency mining farm. Taking advantage of an underutilized electricity source to run computers isn't groundbreaking, but the unusual set-up shows that cryptocurrency mining is now profitable enough to justify finding quite unconventional sources of cheap or new energy generation.
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Cryptocurrency Miners Are Using Old Tires to Power Their Rigs

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Sounds like a splendid idea.

    • So, we're going to burn tires -- which are pretty much inert, and produce a variety of toxic chemicals and nasty particulates -- all in order to create something that is completely useless. My counterproposal is that the gubmints "print" units of cryptocurrency without bothering with all the computing overhead and gives them away to each and every person on the planet on any birthday year that is a prime number. That'd make about as much sense.

      I'll be turning 79 in a few months. 79 is a prime number. So

      • by denzacar ( 181829 ) on Thursday December 07, 2017 @06:21PM (#55698347) Journal a #cryptocurrency called #AwesomCoin which would be powered by labor of small children harvested from impoverished villages.
        Preferably working in a combination of coal and uranium mines - and oil rigs. Oil is needed cause uranium won't burn as easily on its own.
        Also, where possible, whale and dolphin fat would be added to the mix - for flavoring.

        From time to time, in order to increase the value of #AwesomCoin through magic, some of the children would be offered as human sacrifices to Kali, Quetzalcoatl, Beelzebub, Donald Trump and Santa.
        Not necessarily in that order.
        #AwesomCoin mining facilities would be built on a large swat of land presently used as rain forests, in cooperation with Russian and South American criminal cartels and oligarchies.

        #AwesomCoin would be combined with an app where one could purchase and kill real life kittens through a variety of means - from sitting on them until they are crushed to throwing them against an oncoming train (other methods to be added).

        • by Anonymous Coward

          (*Throwing investment dollars*)

          (*Removing all legal obstacles to fast-track this venture*)

          -- Republicans

      • From what I gather from TFA they where already burning the tires when the cryptominer company approached them about utilizing the otherwise wasted heat from the burning process.
  • by ZenShadow ( 101870 ) on Thursday December 07, 2017 @05:00PM (#55697861) Homepage

    ...Silk Road?

    Yeah, I got nothing.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Crytpocurrency is literally a tire fire.

  • by PPH ( 736903 ) on Thursday December 07, 2017 @05:20PM (#55697995)

    ... of dirty money.

    • The very definition... of dirty money.

      Sounds like there's a market for washing it...perhaps with a washing machine...

  • Hyperspeculation (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ClickOnThis ( 137803 ) on Thursday December 07, 2017 @05:39PM (#55698113) Journal

    We can blame this on hyperspeculation in the value of cryptocurrencies. When these currencies become insanely valuable, it becomes profitable to get energy to mine them from insane sources.

    Recall hyperinflation of the German Mark in the 1920s. At one point its value was so low that it made more sense to burn the notes than to use them to buy firewood. How long before it becomes profitable to burn actual bank notes to make electricity to mine bitcoin?

    • How long before it becomes profitable to burn actual bank notes to make electricity to mine bitcoin?

      I think we've found our new economics 'Nobel' Prize winner here.

  • by tlambert ( 566799 ) on Thursday December 07, 2017 @06:17PM (#55698319)

    All hail the Springfield Tire Fire!

    Cryptocurrency embiggens us all! They're the most cromulent currency!

  • While as the source article says in more detail this company does have a novel new process for this, but what they're doing here is hardly new. It's just thermal plasma gasification with another name. I'm not against such a thing myself, assuming they are property filter the waste gases that these systems release. But at the end of the day here this is just a novel way for make a big of money on disposing of old tires. It usually cost money to dispose of these tires in a landfill.
  • Want to swipe some Bitcoin?Just follow the tower of oily black smoke and go in with guns blazing..

    Here in Arizona, we use old tires to make an asphalt replacement that is longer lasting and quieter to drive on than the traditional material.

  • when they can turn tires into Magic the Gathering cards.
  • It was Mr. Reinhardts invention. As a kid in the 80’s, got a tour of his operation after the great “Tar’ Far’” in Virginia. []
  • Cryptocurrency will propel humans into space exploration. We can built solar plants on the moon and transmit back only calculations :-) Stupid idea yea?
    • ha, more sunlight falls on the ground than a thousand earth civilizations could use. it might propel the destruction of deserts, though after this current bubble pops bitcoin and "cryptocurrency" (really just virtual game tokens) might be unpopular for quite a while.

  • Or is it too dirty for even that resource barren place.

Bell Labs Unix -- Reach out and grep someone.