NASA to Launch New Laser Communications Systems to Speed Up Data Transmission From Space to Earth


NASA is ready to test a laser technology in space. The objective of this mission is to accelerate space communication. The Laser Communications Relay Demonstration (LCRD) will be launched on December 4 after a delay of two years. The technology will be launched into space on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket during the Space Test Program Satellite-6 (STPSat-6) mission by the Department of Defense. The mission is expected to be launched from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.

Despite the delay, investigators suggest that the LCRD be launched at the right time to reap its benefits artemis Manned Moon-landing mission which is to be executed in 2025.

NASA The use of lasers in space communication was explained in detail. It said this technology allows 10-100 times more data to be sent back to Earth than radio frequencies.

If the mission started using lasers, it would also prevent overcrowding of the radio frequency spectrum, said Badri Yunus, deputy associate administrator for NASA’s Space Communications and Navigation Program.

The space agency also shared a video on NASA’s Goddard YouTube channel to show how the LCRD would work.

The congestion of the radiofrequency spectrum has intensified as the number of mega-constellations of satellites in low Earth orbits has increased. The LCRD is important because NASA and the commercial sector are planning a number of space missions using Artemis, as well as the planned Gateway Space Station and Commercial Lunar Payload Services program.

The display will travel in geosynchronous orbit at 22,236 miles (35,786 kilometers) and will not reach the Moon. The trial will last at least two years.

NASA said the demonstration will be longer than that of other successful brief missions to speed up space communications.

Trudy Cortes, director of technology demonstrations in NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate, said, “This new system will not only provide higher data transmission rates but will optimize what we call SWAP – or size, weight and power. It will be smaller in volume.” , will weigh less, and use less power than it is currently [technology],

The plan of the mission was approved in 2011. In 2018 it received a warning from the Government Accountability Office about some changes in its design and scope. Later, coronavirus The pandemic hampered due to security quarantine and supply chain issues. NASA officials also said there were new requirements involving moving payloads hosted by the US Space Force, further delaying the launch date. NASA will soon launch more laser missions not only to and from the Moon, but also into the Solar System.