Nokia has revealed it’s working with Nasa to deploy the first 4G communications network on the Moon

Nokia is partnering with NASA to put a 4G network on the moon. The Finnish company has been chosen by the space agency to build a lunar communications system. The $14.1 million deal will see Nokia deploy an “ultra-compact, low-power, space-hardened” wireless 4G network on the moon’s surface by 2022. The network will provide voice and video communication capabilities, as well as telemetry and biometric data exchange. Nokia says the network will help astronauts control lunar rovers, navigate lunar geography in real-time, and stream videos of their explorations.

According to Marcus Weldon, CTO of Nokia and Nokia Bell Labs President, this technology could also have “important research implications” as it can “support sustainable human presence on the lunar surface”. He added, “With NASA funding, we will develop and deploy the first wireless broadband communication system on the moon, using 4G LTE technology.”

NASA’s Artemis program aims to send humans back to the moon by 2024, with the long-term goal of establishing a permanent presence there. The 4G network is seen as a crucial step towards that goal.

Jim Reuter, NASA’s associate administrator for Space Technology, said, “The system could support communications on a lunar base, astronaut communication, and lunar navigation.” He added, “Reliable, resilient, and high-capacity communications networks will be key to supporting sustainable human presence on the lunar surface.”

This isn’t Nokia’s first foray into space technology. The company has been working with NASA since 2018 to bring 4G connectivity to the International Space Station (ISS).

By The Impactlab