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  • Tech - News - Startups
  • Updated: October 19, 2020

NASA Chooses Nokia To Install LTE Network On The Moon, By Samuel Mayowa

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has sealed a deal with telecommunications giants, Nokia to build the first cellular LTE network on the moon.

Nokia which disclosed this on Monday stated that NASA is projecting a future where humans return to the moon to establish lunar settlements.

The U.S space agency is targeting returning humans to the moon by 2024 and establish a long-term presence there under its Artemis programme.

The Finland-based phone maker revealed that the first wireless broadband communications system in space would be built on the lunar surface in late 2022 before humans make it back there.

Nokia further disclosed that they will partner with a Texas-based private spacecraft design company, Intuitive Machines, to deliver the equipment to the moon on their lunar lander. The network will configure itself and establish a 4G/LTE communications system on the moon. It also stated that it still aims to eventually switch to 5G.

By so doing, astronauts will be able to get voice and video communications capabilities. There will also be an allowance for telemetry and biometric data exchange, as well as the deployment and remote control of lunar rovers and other robotic devices, according to the company.

According to the company, the network will be programmed to withstand extreme conditions of the launch and lunar landing will be withstood by the network as well as to operate in space. However, it will have to be sent to the moon in an extremely compact form to meet the stringent size, weight, and power constraints of space payloads.

READ ALSO: Nokia Unveils New Smartphones

Nokia added that the network would be using 4G/LTE which has been in use worldwide for the last decade rather than the latest 5G technology, the reason being that the former was a more known quantity with proven reliability.

The company is already planning to “pursue space applications of LTE’s successor technology, 5G”.

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