For centuries, humans have been captivated by the Moon and its enigmatic presence in the sky. While it has been visited by humans only a handful of times, technological advancements have made it possible for us to explore and utilize its resources in a more meaningful way. With NASA’s Artemis missions expected to put human boots back on the Moon by 2025, Nokia has already begun preparations to put 4G internet on the Moon this year.
Nokia’s Journey to the Moon
In 2018, NASA announced its plans to establish a sustainable presence on the Moon, including the creation of a lunar outpost. The agency’s goal was to provide a platform for scientific research and exploration, as well as pave the way for future missions to Mars. To achieve this, NASA decided to partner with private companies to develop the technology needed to make this a reality.
Nokia revealed in October 2020 that it had been chosen by NASA to construct the initial cellular network on the lunar surface.The company’s Bell Labs division was tasked with designing and building a 4G LTE network, which would be used by astronauts, rovers, and other devices to communicate with each other and with Earth. The network would also enable high-definition video streaming, remote control of lunar rovers, and other data-intensive applications.
Nokia’s Progress So Far
Almost three years after the initial announcement, Nokia is finally looking to complete the project. As per reports by CNBC, Nokia is targeting to launch operational 4G internet services on the Moon by the conclusion of this year. To achieve this feat, the company from Finland is planning to utilize SpaceX’s rockets to ferry essential hardware to the lunar surface. The network infrastructure will operate from a foundation affixed to a Nova-C lunar lander, and a solar-powered rover produced by Lunar Outpost is also set to be transported to the Moon as part of the mission.
Nokia’s 4G LTE network will be the first-ever cellular network on the Moon. The network will use the 1800 MHz frequency band, which is currently used for 4G LTE networks on Earth. Nokia’s solution will be able to withstand the harsh lunar environment, which includes extreme temperatures, radiation, and vacuum. The company’s network will be able to operate autonomously, without the need for human intervention.
The Benefits of 4G Internet on the Moon
The deployment of a 4G LTE network on the Moon will have significant benefits for scientific research and exploration. The network will enable real-time communication between astronauts and researchers on Earth, allowing for more efficient collaboration and decision-making. The network will also enable remote control of lunar rovers and other devices, which will improve the efficiency and safety of lunar missions.
In addition, the network will enable high-definition video streaming, which will allow people on Earth to experience the Moon in a more immersive way. This will provide a unique opportunity for people to learn about the Moon and the challenges of space exploration. The network will also provide a platform for future lunar missions, including the establishment of a permanent human presence on the Moon.
Why 4G and not 5G?
The decision to use 4G technology on the Moon is based on practical considerations. While 5G is the latest and fastest wireless technology, it requires a lot of power and advanced infrastructure to work properly. Given the harsh lunar environment, 4G is a more practical choice. It is also widely available and proven to work in remote and challenging locations on Earth.
Nokia’s 4G LTE network on the Moon is a significant milestone in space exploration. The deployment of a cellular network on the Moon will provide numerous benefits for scientific research and exploration, as well as pave the way for future missions to Mars and beyond. Nokia’s solution is a testament to the power of technology and innovation, and it will inspire generations to come to explore and discover the mysteries of our universe.