LunaNet: NASA tries to establish an Internet connection on the Moon

LunaNet, NASA’s “Internet” connection for the Moon and Artemis missions, has been created. NASA’s Artemis program aims to create a permanent human presence on the Moon. The Global Moon Program is the tip of the US sword in the new space race, but Artemis II has been suspended due to a court battle over a NASA-awarded lunar landing module that Blue Origin questioned.

NASA will launch Artemis I carrying an unmanned Orion spacecraft to the natural satellite in November. According to the space agency (via Science Times), the first woman and the first person of color will set foot on the surface of the Moon following the Artemis missions. Artemis Base Camp, located at the south pole of the Moon, is also a stepping stone to Mars and beyond. With so many moving components, having a reliable communications network would be of great help.

NASA designed LunaNet to eliminate interruptions and delays in space communications and data transfer. Today’s space missions rely on pre-programmed connections to space satellites or ground antennas, which limits communications and data transfer. LunaNet will be used for scientific reasons and will provide long-term communications, navigation and weather monitoring.

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NASA LunaNet: First Step for a Solar System Internet

(Photo: NASA / Reese Patillo)
Conceptual graphic LunaNet DTN.

Academics, ground control, spacecraft, astronauts, and other users will all connect to the network regardless of their location. Rovers and astronauts on the Moon will be able to determine their location, map routes, allow autonomous movement and organize rapid returns to base via LunaNet navigation. Astronauts will also have access to real-time space weather data. LunaNet will advise astronauts to take refuge in the event of a dangerous solar storm. The Internet connection will also aid search and rescue missions, scientific research and radio astronomical studies. NASA will use LunaNet to conduct sophisticated research into space communications for future missions. According to Nasa, LunaNet is the major step towards building a Solar System Internet.

To launch the construction of this new “lunar Internet”, AutoEvolution said NASA released the “LunaNet Interoperability Specification Project. “Industry professionals from around the world will then hold technical discussions.

The space agency will better understand the space connection thanks to LunaNet and can prepare for future trips to other alien worlds. NASA is laying the groundwork for astronauts to explore outer space by sending teams to the moon. The Moon will be used as a test bed for technologies like LunaNet, which will facilitate humanity’s journey to Mars and beyond.

NASA to place 24-foot Internet towers on the Moon

EstMojo said NASA had made the lunar component of the Malapert Massif, a huge impact crater near the Moon’s South Pole, a lunar base camp. This location meets NASA requirements for sunlight exposure and line-of-sight communication with the Deep Space Network and is an excellent location for the use of in situ resources.

LunaNet will require high speed communications between astronauts and different parts like the bridge, landers, houses, rovers and more for surface exploration. While there isn’t the same degree of interference on the Moon as in a neighborhood full of houses and trees, it also lacks the current electrical infrastructure, power returns, and even a lunar internet. which must all be provided.

Using the same pole-based technique, the team suggests installing routers on multiple 24-foot poles tied to habitats, landers, or other large gear. Unlike a single large tower, this technique would give network reliability to astronauts in space habitats while allowing mobile explorers to travel between routers.

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