The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has selected Nokia to build a mobile network on the moon. It will be the first of its kind there naturally, and part of a plan to establish lunar settlements.
Nokia will build its first mobile network on the surface of the moon in late 2022. And it will be working with Intuitive Machines, a private space craft design company based in Texas, to send equipment up there. The initial plan is to establish a 4G LTE network, before ultimately transitioning to 5G.
The company said 4G LTE networks will be established first because it already has a proven track record, being in use on Earth for the last decade. At any rate, the mobile network will allow astronauts to deploy and control lunar rovers and other robotics remotely. This is, of course, in addition to communication via voice and video.
This will happen ahead of NASA’s Artemis program. As part of the plan, the agency intends for humans to return to the moon in 2024. And once there, the people sent to the moon will dig in for a long-term presence. The Artemis program itself will be in preparation for missions to Mars. We’ll probably see newer, multi-million dollar toilets by then.