While the competition among the telecoms providers on Earth is as staggering as ever, equipment creator Nokia recently announced its expansion into a new market- securing a deal to install the first cellular network on the Moon. The Finnish company stated that NASA was selected to deploy an “ultra-compact, low-power, and space-hardened” wireless 4G network on the Earth’s satellite lunar surface, as a part of NASA’s plan to establish and promote a long-term human presence on the Moon by 2030.
Nokia mission to the Moon
The deal contract of $14.1 million was awarded to Nokia’s US subsidiary. It is an exclusive part of NASA’s Artemis program, which looks up to sending the first woman, and next man, to the moon by 2024. The astronauts will start by carrying out detailed experiments and explorations for the voyage, which NASA hopes will help it develop its first human mission NASA launch to Mars.
Nokia & NASA to install 4G on Moon
The network equipment by Nokia will be installed remotely on the lunar surface with a lunar hopper built by Intuitive Machines in late 2022. “The network will self-configure upon its deployment on the Moon’s surface,” Nokia stated, adding that the wireless technology will facilitate “vital command and control functions, remote control of lunar rovers, real-time navigation and streaming of high definition video.”
Mission to the Moon
The 4G equipment will later be updated to a super-fast 5G network in the future. In all its capacity, NASA recently announced that it would distribute $370 million to 14 companies for supplying “Tipping Point” technologies for the mission. This includes robotics and innovative methods of harvesting resources essential for living on the moon, like oxygen and energy sources. The bulk of the funding went straightaway to companies researching cryogenic propellants and freezing liquids used to fuel spacecraft. Among these companies, Elon Musk’s SpaceX received a $53.2 million grant for a demonstration of transferring ten metric tons of liquid oxygen between the tanks on a sta