Why Nokia are installing 4G on the Moon
Phone signal that's 'out of this world' sounds like a bad TV advert, but it is in fact an exact description of Nokia's latest business venture.
Just as 5G arrives on planet earth, its predecessor 4G is heading to the moon.
I could not believe the news when I heard that NASA wanted a phone network on the moon, and I also couldn't believe they'd chosen Nokia.
Why does NASA want to do this? Well... it's all part of a longer-term plan for NASA. They need a reliable network that they want building by 2022, because... and wait for it... humans are due to arrive on the moon shortly after in 2024 as part of NASA's Project Artemis.
They're planning to build a sustainable element on and around the moon that will allow for our robots and astronauts to explore more and conduct more science than ever before.
What is project Artemis?
NASA is planning to land the first woman and the next man on the moon by 2024, using their latest technology to take a better look at the surface of the moon than ever before.
Even more excitingly, they'll then use the data they collect by the end of the decade to decide the next giant leap... which is sending astronauts to mars!
They have proven experience with similar projects, and quite honestly they're probably the biggest 4G supplier in the world.
Nokia has already been developing and providing mission-critical networks that have been taken up by airports, factories, first responders, and the harshest mining operations on Earth for automation, data collection, and reliable communications.
They're the king of getting reliable communications to the harshest terrains.
Unbeknown to most, they actually pioneers in space technologies, from pioneering satellite communication to discovering the cosmic microwave background radiation produced by the Big Bang. By building the first high-performance wireless network on the Moon, Nokia Bell Labs is once again planting the flag for innovation beyond normal limits.
Bell Labs- what are they?
They have an industrial research arm called the Bell Labs, which is offering up its equipment to NASA to help build the lunar network. And it's all been specifically designed to withstand the harsh conditions of the launch AND the landing as well as being able to work properly in the extreme conditions of space.
How will it work?
Essentially the network will self-configure once it's been deployed.
Nokia says the network will give connectivity for any activity that the astronauts need to carry out. So this will include using the network for transmitting data, controlling the lunar rovers, streaming any high definition video and it will give them the chance to have high definition voice and video communications back to earth!