NASA Wants Low Earth Orbit Wifi

NASA is working with a device designed by Digi International to test wireless communications inside satellites and payloads coming from the International Space Station (ISS)

As part of NASA's "wireless-in-space" initiative, Digi International's TechEdSat 5 -- a device about the size of a fire extinguisher -- containing Digi XBee radio frequency (RF) modules was released into Earth's orbit at an altitude of approximately 250 miles by the International Space Station.

Digi XBee RF modules, taking the place of wired connections in the satellite, operated as wireless "data-crossroads" between TechEdSat 5 key components. Every 10 seconds, the modules transmitted orbital data such as translational acceleration, angular rate, temperature, atmospheric pressure, magnetic field, and strain, which will later be used in the design of future satellites, Digi International said.

Communication in the solar system is one of the ambitious projects put forward by communications engineer - and science fiction writer - George O. Smith in his 1942 story QRM - Interplanetary. Smith writes extensively about the need for solar system-wide communications.

The Venus Equilateral Relay Station was a modern miracle of engineering if you liked to believe the books. Actually, Venus Equilateral was an asteroid that had been shoved into its orbit about the Sun, forming a practical demonstration of the equilateral triangle solution of the Three Moving Bodies. It was a long cylinder, about three miles in length by about a mile in diameter...

This was the center of Interplanetary Communications. This was the main office. It was the heart of the Solar System's communication line, and as such, it was well manned. Orders for everything emanated from Venus Equilateral.

Via ZDNet.

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