NASA Will Use Lasers To Improve Earth-Space Communication (Video)
Aug 30, 2013 10:50
Communication from Earth to space and back is handled by radio frequency signals. But as our exploration expands, we'll need a better means of communication. So NASA is going to implement its Lunar Laser Communication Demonstration (LLCD).
The agency says it will provide evidence that two way communication between Earth and space is possible with lasers.
The technology will be able to extend the range of communication and allow more data to travel at a faster rate. They are hoping to transmit more, higher resolution photos from deep space as well as 3D video. Laser will probably suffer less interference compared to RF signals. It's bandwidth is also six times that of a standard RF system and will use a smaller transmitter with less power.
The system will be launched into the Moon's orbit aboard NASA's Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer next week to test the lines of communications out. Once it gets there, it will send insanely huge amounts of data at hundreds of millions of bits per second from the moon to several locations on earth.
LLCD will only be a short experiment, but NASA has already planned for a
longer one, the Laser Communications Relay Demonstration (LCRD). That
mission will launch in 2017.
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