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NASA’s space-based laser network works

by on23 November 2023

Making the network go "pew pew" 

NASA picked up a laser signal fired from an instrument that launched with the Psyche spacecraft, which is currently more than 16 million kilometres from Earth and heading toward a mysterious metal asteroid.

The laser communication was the first successful test of NASA's Deep Space Optical Communications (DSOC) system. This next-generation comms link sends information by laser light.

It's part of a series of tests NASA is doing to speed up communications in deep space on different missions.

NASA project technologist Abi Biswas said: “Achieving first light is a tremendous achievement. The ground systems successfully detected the deep space laser photons from DSOC. We could also send some data, meaning we could exchange 'bits of light' from and to deep space."

Last modified on 23 November 2023
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