At long last, the moon will have cell service. With a deadline of 2028 set in place for the United States to build its first lunar base on the surface of the moon, Nokia has won a contract to build the first-ever cellular network on the moon's surface. While it won't feature cutting-edge 5G technology right away, NASA says Nokia's 4G network should provide more reliable communication from the lunar base to mission control on Earth. That said, the space-faring organization says there are plans to eventually upgrade the network to 5G once things get established.
Although NASA aims to have its lunar base established on the moon by 2028, Nokia says in a press releases it hopes to deploy the "first ultra-compact, low-power, space-hardened, end-to-end LTE solution" on the lunar surface in late 2022, just two years from now.
"Leveraging our rich and successful history in space technologies, from pioneering satellite communication to discovering the cosmic microwave background radiation produced by the Big Bang, we are now building the first ever cellular communications network on the Moon," Nokia CTO Marcus Weldon says in a release.
He adds, "Reliable, resilient and high-capacity communications networks will be key to supporting sustainable human presence on the lunar surface. By building the first high performance wireless network solution on the Moon, Nokia Bell Labs is once again planting the flag for pioneering innovation beyond the conventional limits.”
Reports suggest Nokia was awarded $14.1 million for the project. According to the mobile tech company, the network is "ideally suited for providing wireless connectivity for any activity that astronauts need to carry out, enabling voice and video communications capabilities, telemetry, and biometric data exchange, and deployment and control of robotic and sensor payloads."
It has yet to be seen which Netflix show will be the first series binge-watched on the moon.
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