The Moon is Now a Wi-Fi Hotspot

By Carl Engelking | May 28, 2014 11:53 am

the-moon-wifi

Complimentary Wi-Fi is so commonplace that a business advertising its “hotspot” in the window seems somewhat passé. But a new hotspot location should impress even the most jaded among us: For the first time, scientists have demonstrated it’s possible to beam a wireless Internet signal across the 238,900 miles separating Earth from the moon.

The demonstration, done by researchers at NASA and MIT, means that future moon explorers could theoretically check in at Mare Imbrium and post lunar selfies with greater speed than you do from your home network.

The team will present its findings June 9 at the CLEO laser technology conference in California.

Not Your Starbucks Wi-Fi

In order to bring broadband to the moon, scientists used four separate telescopes based in New Mexico to send an uplink signal to a receiver mounted on a satellite orbiting the moon. Each telescope is about 6 inches in diameter and is fed by a laser transmitter that beams information in coded pulses of infrared light.

Since our atmosphere bends the signal as it travels to the moon, the four telescopes transmit the light through different columns of air, each with different bending effects. This setup increases the chance that at least one of the laser beams will interact with the receiver, and establish a connection with the moon.

And if you’re fixing to binge on Netflix on the moon, the connection isn’t too bad, either. Scientists managed to send data from Earth to the moon at a rate of 19.44 megabits per second — on par with slower broadband speeds — and could download information from the moon at a rate of whopping 622 megabits per second. According to Wired UK, that’s over 4,000 times faster than current radio transmission speeds.

So, in light of all that, there’s really only question that remains… “What’s the password?”

 

Photo credit: Moon: NASA; Wi-Fi signal: Vector/Shutterstock

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Space & Physics, Technology, top posts
  • Kjvyn Koldt

    Or perhaps it could be used by the “non-terrestrial” officers proven to already be stationed outside this planet…

    • Chris Risseeuw

      Really? and the proof is where?

      • thetruthnothinmore

        The program used to be called Solar Warden. There is no telling what it is called now.

      • Josh Pactor

        Is this another new crazy conspiracy theory? Do I need to make a new tinfoil hat?!

      • tfosorcim

        RIGHT HERE!
        I have ironclad, incontrovertible proof that aliens exist:
        I was abducted by aliens, and they totally erased all memories of the event. QED.

  • itsme

    So, you are telling me that you can send a radio signal, and that this radio signal can bounce on the surface of bodies? How sensational is that. And with a sentence like “Not your Starbucks Wi-Fi”, to add to the ridicule.

    • Kyle Schlichter

      Lasers, not radio waves, actually. And being able to establish a connection cable of sending and receiving large packets of data in something akin to real time all the way to and from the freaking Moon is a pretty big deal with regard to future lunar missions.

      • Big_Bouy

        Let’s not forget the Mars One mission
        !

  • tfosorcim

    So, let me get this straight.
    We can now provide wi-fi to no one on the moon, but we cannot provide low-cost broadband to everyone on the earth.

    “Never underestimate your own stupidity.”–Albert Einstein.

    • http://macromanjr.blogspot.com/ Brian Lockett

      Hate to be “that guy,” but the quote is:

      “Never underestimate your own ignorance.”

      Though, I think you’re also thinking of:

      “Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former.”

      • tfosorcim

        Thanks for the correction. I’m running on memory, so I’ll probably misquote Will Rogers:
        “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you in trouble. It’s what you do know that ain’t so.”

        • Dean Marais

          actually google and facebook aim to cover the entire earth with wifi in only a few years. google is sending up 180 satelites starting this year, and both have bought autonomous drone companies to fly into unreached airspaces

          • EdytaHusseinmuo

            as Thelma explained I cannot
            believe that a stay at home mom can make $7420 in four weeks on the internet .
            more info here R­e­x­1­0­.­C­O­M­

          • Charles2424

            And where is the profitably or is this just for NSA use?

          • KiraHaxellepa

            my Aunty
            Allison recently got a nice 6 month old Jaguar by working from a macbook.this website C­a­s­h­d­u­t­i­e­s­.­C­O­M­

          • Dean Marais

            they make their money off ad revenue. 4 billion new users at a 1billion dollar cost.

    • Josh Pactor

      I’m with Bill Gates on this, let’s fix disease, poverty, food, and education before we start with “nice to have” this like broadband.

      • BlackAndGold

        Those things are not anywhere near as fixable as beaming a signal to the Moon is easy. Disease, forget it, as soon as you cure one another one pops up. Poverty, many times caused by one own personal decisions. Food, we have plenty, logistics, govt., location etc. are the real problem. Education, again it’s more of a personal decision than anything else.

        • Dane Curbow

          Poverty is not only the result of a personal decision, but moreso the current economic state of the area you live in and the family you are born into. Education is also not solely a personal choice as our education system does one thing well, churn out people who can take orders and follow steps 1 through N. We need an education system that works for everyone (look at Khan academy’s results with their classroom framework!). We need an economic (or just resource distribution) system that properly supplies people with their needs. We in fact have more than enough food, shelter, and clothing for everyone. Sure not everyone can have a Ferraris, but self driving cars will take care of that. In fact most resources and items need to be switched over into a “sharing” system to more ECONOMICALLY (the exact opposite effect of our actual economy) use the resources available to us.

          • BlackAndGold

            Another socialist, everything is the fault of the system and not the person and therefore we need more govt. to control more things. The govt is not the answer. Maybe you need someone to tell you how to do everything in your life but I don’t. The economy and everything else about society is far too complex to let a bunch idiotic bureaucrats try and manage things.

          • Dane Curbow

            I don’t know what I am, but call me what you want. I’m not saying everything is the fault of the system, nor did I ever say that so please don’t put words into my mouth or build an entire picture of my character from one comment.

            And yes, there are plenty of people who have the chance to make a choice that will make their life heaven or hell and is 100% their fault and no fault of “the system” as you wrap the complexities and interactions of life into one word. But you can’t deny that “the system” at the time plays a role into some peoples situations and the world is stacked so high against them that they just can’t get anywhere. We currently live in a system where a company is allowed to bring in record profits while paying its employs minimum wage, and avoid long enough hours to pay benefits, all while the cost of living is higher than what that kind of pay can support thus resulting in a lot of being subsidized by the government, that is tax payers money going into the pockets of those with to much so those with to little can scrap by. You can’t tell me “the system” isn’t at fault when people starve when there is plenty of food, who freezes when there are empty homes and apartments, and died when medical treatment is available and the supplies for it plentiful. Not everything is an individuals fault and many times it is NO FAULT of theirs that result in their situation.

            I never said we need to give the government more control, nor do I think it should, nor that I think it is “the answer”.

            I believe in a Star Trek future (best analogy that people understand). I tend to call it a post-scarcity resource based economy (economy: careful management of available resources) but when I explain what it is people often just say “Oh Star Trek”.

            As for your final statement “The economy and everything else about society is far too complex to let a bunch idiotic bureaucrats try and manage things.”, I totally agree. Which is why I think we need to rework a lot of those. Go back to the basics with the new tools available. Make a new “system”. We’ve done it a few times and so far each times it boosts us forward as a species and civilization. The most asinine thing to think is that the current “system” is the best one and we don’t need to change it up drastically to make the next leap. History tends to repeat itself. Don’t get me wrong, we made great progress as a species, its just time to shake things up again for the better.

          • BlackAndGold

            We don’t need a “new” system we just need to reconstitute the system that made us the most free and most powerful nation the world has ever known. We’ve destroyed a good capitalist system. It’s the only economic system that allows people to rise up. It’s the only system that will create anything even approaching the star trek universe. However, there will never be an environment where resources don’t have a cost associated with them and therefore there will always be people that have more than others. We, as individuals, will always fight to get ahead and if that ever changes, we will go extinct soon after. It’s a fundamental law of the universe. You can try to fight it, but you will lose.

          • M0nk3m4n

            “We don’t need a “new” system we just need to reconstitute the system that made us the most free and most powerful nation the world has ever known.”

            Just another totally hopeless idiot here. After those insightful words, this is the brilliant argument he makes.

          • BlackAndGold

            Our beautifully crafted system has been destroyed by people (read: self serving bureaucrats) that think they can tweek it to make it better. Then there are the Marxists (i.e. democrats) that just want to do away with it all together. The only idiots are the ones that think that any form of Marxism is the answer. Capitalism is nature’s form of economics and fighting the force of nature is a losing battle. I guess that point is too difficult for you to understand.

          • M0nk3m4n

            I dunno, you seem so wrapped up in politics that you fail to understand basic logic anymore.

            The guy’s talking about how many people cannot get jobs in the current economy despite their best efforts and you just resort to all this political garbage but fail to actually assess the problem.

            The reason guys like Dane and I are so “socialist” is because we’ve probably both been on the crappy end of the spectrum. Me? I’m wayyyy below the poverty line and can’t find a job to save my life.

            Things get much worse and I won’t have food or a home. I am constantly looking for work, I have tried alternate methods too, such a using my PC repair skills around, but nobody has enough cash to pay me for any services. Small town life.

            Not sure how you are financially or what sort of jobs you’ve had or anything, but to have the opinion of all this that you have, it was probably better than my own.

            Obamacare, for example…is the only way I’ve ever been able to have insurance and see a doctor without having to borrow money from family. Maybe it’s not a perfect system, but it’s helping some people who need it, a lot.

          • BlackAndGold

            Maybe the reason you’re unable to get a job ie because you fail to understand basuc logic. The reason the system is broken. This administration has put is own ideology above the good of the people. They would rather people become dependent on the govt so that they can further force their ideology down our throats. Normally, the deeper the recession the faster the recovery. This admin has killed the recovery with its business stifling policies. Your best efforts have either been misdirected or are inferior to this administration’s ability to kill your opportunities. That’s why I said that we had a good system but it’s been destroyed by what are essentially Marxists. Stop listening to left wing idiots in the media. Businesses are not evil.

          • M0nk3m4n

            I said nothing about businesses being evil or any of this stuff, man. Are you even reading my replies?

          • BlackAndGold

            Ate you trading mine? You to fixate on the least important aspect of what I say. Maybe your lack of focusing on what’s important plays a large part in your inability to get a job. Apparently you’re able to play on the Internet and argue all day though.

          • M0nk3m4n

            I assure you, there’s nothing important about what you have said. :b

            And arguing all day? You assume that from my one time replying to you? This is the first time I’ve even used this site. I rarely pay any attention to media of any sort. This article happened to interest me though, being somewhat scientific as it is.

          • BlackAndGold

            Says the guy that isn’t smart enough to move to a location where he can get a job. I go where they pay me.

          • M0nk3m4n

            And no, pal. The reason I’m unable to get a job is because nobody is hiring. Nobody has any free positions. You’re blind to that kind of thing though, right? Deaf too, I’m guessing.

          • BlackAndGold

            There are people hiring. I do contrast software development and I’ve not been out of work this whole recession. In fact I’m starting a new project in a week. Make the effort to increase your employable skills and stop voting for Democrats.

          • M0nk3m4n

            You’re a moron. There may be people hiring where you are, but not here, not locally enough for someone who can’t even afford a vehicle to work at. I never vote either way because neither side is worth a damn. Get it through your head and stop being such a political whore.

          • BlackAndGold

            I’m a very well employed moron. What does that make you? You’re too lazy or ignorant to do what it takes to go get a job where ever it is. It’s obvious that you’re content with your Obama handouts so you can sit around all day playing video games and getting wasted. You have two choices, do what it takes or complain and be a drain on society.

          • Dane Curbow

            The solution I’m proposing is technology driven, with a logical basis. Marxism as you think of it is just as corrupted as the “beautifully crafted” system that is not so beautiful anymore. If it was beautifully crafted it would still be beautiful, but it had flaws that allowed it to be warped. Money and consumerism with the constant drive for profits can’t work in a world of finite resources. To profit you need continued sales, so the stuff you make needs to break, and be cheap to make. Neither of which are a sustainable use of resources. The need for continued growth is driven by our broken monetary system and this whole “factional reserve banking”. The Earth has more than enough for everyone to meet a standard. It is just the people with more than they will ever be able to enjoy have to deal with having and using what they actually need so the rest of people can have enough to live also instead of having nothing and dying. There will always be more people than jobs with the increase in automation. The rate of new jobs fueled by these technologies will always be lower, if we can’t feed everyone on Earth and give everyone a share of the pie then the system is broken and we need a new one, one that can provide this reality, because the resources are there, we just misuse a lot of them. We are destroying our planet right now also, we need to stop that too.

          • BlackAndGold

            You proposal is not technology driven at all. It’s driven by non-existent fantasy about everyone just doing everything they can to help everyone else out even if it’s to their own detriment. It’s a failed ideology Dane, proven over and over again and it’s killing this country as we speak.

            “The earth has enough for everyone to meet a standard”, sure if that standard is low and if half the people work to give it to the other half. Again, Marxism doesn’t work and never will.

            It’s really sad to hear someone fight for dead ideology as if it’s so wonderful. You’ve obviously read and fallen in love with Das Capital, no go read The Wealth of Nations for a real lesson in economics.

            If Marxism is so great why aren’t there Marxist countries all over that are better than the US where people are dying to migrate to?

            Cuba is so close, Dane, I’ll buy the ticket so you can enjoy your utopia.

          • Emkay

            COMMUNISM/SOCIALISM IS CREEPING IN ONE STEP AT A TIME, EXACTLY AS PLANNED.

            Six trivia questions to see how much history you know. Be honest, it’s kinda fun and revealing. If you don’t know the answer make your best guess. Answer all the questions (no cheating) before looking at the answers.

            Who said it?

            1) “We’re going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good.”

            A. Karl Marx

            B. Adolph Hitler

            C. Joseph Stalin

            D. None of the above

            2) “It’s time for a new beginning, for an end to government of the few, by the few, and for the few…… And to replace it with shared responsibility,,,,,for shared prosperity.”

            A. Lenin

            B. Mussolini

            C. Idi Amin

            D. None of the Above

            3) “(We) …..can’t just let business as usual go on, and that means something has to be taken away from some people.”

            A. Nikita Khrushev

            B. Josef Goebbels

            C. Boris Yeltsin

            D. None of the above

            4) “We have to build a political consensus and that requires people to give up a little bit of their own … in order to create this common ground.”

            A. Mao Tse Dung

            B. Hugo Chavez

            C. Kim Jong Il

            D. None of the above

            5) “I certainly think the free-market has failed.”

            A. Karl Marx

            B. Lenin

            C. Molotov

            D. None of the above

            6) “I think it’s time to send a clear message to what has become the most profitable sector in (the) entire economy that they are being watched.”

            A. Pinochet

            B. Milosevic

            C. Saddam Hussein

            D. None of the above

            Scroll down for answers

            Answers

            (1) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 6/29/2004

            (2) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 5/29/2007

            (3) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 6/4/2007

            (4) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 6/4/2007

            (5) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 6/4/2007

            (6) D. None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton 9/2/2005

          • Daniel Kaiser

            Our beautiful capitalistic system is a complete failure. We do not have anything resembling capitalism. Nor do we have anything close to a Marxist system. The system we have always had is an aristocratic control scheme. In the beginning of our presumably great system the country was controlled by the wealthy landowners. The civil war changed that to the money talks or the “company model “. The controls for this system is found in the way our taxes are done and our laws are written. I like to call it corporatocracy. We have always had laws that protect the status quo. in the pre Civil War era it was land taxes and voting rights.after the Civil War anyone over the age of 18 could vote. This changed the voting dynamic to favor the industrial revolution and the new money. The system has been refining the corporate welfare laws ever since.

          • Dane Curbow

            You make a lot of bold claims without any substance and to think that things can’t, won’t, or shouldn’t change is ignorant. We have changed in the past every time we’ve been given a new set of tools and technologies. To assume we can’t continue to improve is asinine and to think we don’t need a new system is just as much so. We don’t need to go back to what we had because what we had before lead to now and ignoring that fact is to ignore the truth.

            “We, as individuals, will always fight to get ahead and if that ever changes, we will go extinct soon after.”

            This statement is more of a cultural issue. If we had a world where you didn’t have to fight to survive would you? If we lived by what we speak could this not change? Sharing is caring my friend so let us share!

            Why would we go extinct as soon as we stop fighting each other and instead work together to solve our problems and move forward? What evidence do you have to support this? I mean we have this thing called intelligence and it has done us pretty good so far. Education leads to less violence and a better understanding of our reality. So lets keep that up.

            The future will be different, instead of holding strong onto past ideologies and failed concepts why don’t we move forward with new ideas and concepts? Things change, let us embrace and fuel change, for the better!

          • BlackAndGold

            Oh brother, you and your utopia. Clearly you’re living in la-la land. My statement is not cultural at all it’s called reality and no amount of Marxist ideology is going to fix it. What will drive us to improve is a capitalism because it is THE system that has driven us to be the best the world has ever seen. It will continue to do so if you stop complaining about what you don’t have. You will never get to your fabled utopia if you don’t work for it and people don’t work for OTHER people they work for themselves and that self interest actually helps the collective to advance. The only failed concept is Marxism. Capitalism is a wonderful success, it’s only recently when Marxist ideologies have started creeping in has it stated falling apart.

            Ask Bill Walton how communal living where all for one and one for all works out.

          • Dane Curbow

            You way of thinking something is “impossible” is what gets in the way of people trying to make a new reality. At one point in time people thought traveling to the moon would be impossible and those people were living in “la-la land” as opposed to reality also. Please move aside for the people who will make this happen and stop telling us what we can’t achieve. Capitalism is and will reach a point in time where it is replaced. I am hoping that it is in my lifetime that I get to see this. This reality is possible, you just have to get enough people to want and work towards it, together, sharing. And I’m not complaining about what I don’t have… in fact I have more than most people. Probably even you. I’m a fresh college grad who is already in the top 10%… Once again. You keep using a lot of personal attacks against me without much basis as opposed to address the actual topic I am discussing.

          • Emkay

            why don’t you guys take it outside and throw rocks at each other,, like we did in 2nd grade.

          • Dane Curbow

            “Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something.” – Plato

          • BlackAndGold

            Sorry Dane, perfection is impossible. However, WORKING for it isn’t. Socialism ALWAYS results in the lazy ones doing as little as possible while the others support them. The only way to get close to where you dream of being is to make people responsible for themselves and allowing them to fail if that’s their choice. Only then will EVERYONE do the work necessary for improvement. That’s called capitalism. Basically, you’re young and dumb which is a shame considering that you’re supposedly college educated.. People take care of themselves first. You’ll learn that someday. This communal BS was all the rage in the ’60s and now that the hippies are running things the country is falling apart. The more you give away the more you encourage people to take it.

          • Dane Curbow

            Oh yeah, X never works. The sounds of a pessimist. Show me this tech based resource economy and where it has been done before and failed? Your assumptions are made based on the current framework of society. I’m not young and dumb. I’m free and hopeful. You like labels, I can tell. Socialism vs Capitalism, as if the world is black and white in all cases and nothing can ever improve in a fashion different than the way you so stringently see the world.

          • BlackAndGold

            Your assumptions are based on fantasy. In the real world not everyone wants to pull their own weight. Your free now until a fully Marxist govt. takes over. Kids your freedom goodbye. Your young and dumb because you don’t know the first thing about how people work. Not to mention that you’re entire argument is based on fiction. You have to get from here to there and Marxism is a proven failure. Require people to be responsible for themselves and give them ACTUAL freedom and they will improve things all on their own.

            Show me where your tech based resource economy is even a thing. The “old” way didn’t lead to “this”, it was changing away from the old way that has lead to this. Things will improve if you hey the govt out of the way and let people take charge of their own destiny. That’s the way we became the greatest country in the history of human civilization. Unfortunately it’s not perfect so instead of taking a slower incremental path to fixing things some decided that they needed to throw out all out and try something new and is turned out to be much worse in such a short time.

          • Dane Curbow

            Man you sure do like destroying any thought that is opposed to your way in all forms without any actual data or reason other than to constantly use the words marxist and government a lot… Don’t worry I don’t need your approval to work on a better world.

          • Emkay

            oh boo hoo, shut up and move on…

          • Emkay

            “Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its only inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery”.
            -Winston Churchill-

      • Emkay

        Matt Damon has been actually involved with putting together the teams necessary to drill and cap water wells all over the world in places with extreme drinking water shortage.. lets see, you can maybe survive a few days without water, then you die….hooray for Matt…

    • Jim Magdelania

      you do know how technology works right??? you do realize it takes time right?
      ten years ago, i was using a gps unit the size of my arm in the military.
      now i’ve got the same gps resolution on my phone just like everyone else.

    • JeanLuc

      That’s not how technological progress works.

      No one is spending large sums of money to build an infrastructure for internet on the moon. This was a small group of people who were up to the task of seeing if it was even possible. They succeeded.

      Nothing they are doing in anyway distracts or detracts from the goal of providing low-cost broadband to everyone. If anything, this could help further that cause, as some new tech developed for transmitting to the moon might be easily adapted to transmit across the Earth.

      So no, it is not stupidity at all. True stupidity would be dismissing any sort of scientific research or progress without immediately obvious applications.

      It is funny that you quoted Einstein, because he is the best example of this. In 1905, people like you criticized him for wasting time developing a theory with no practical applications instead of working on “real problems” like Polio. Afterall, general relativity was completely and utterly useless to everyday life… until we started building communication and GPS satellites. Modern telecommunications and positioning systems (and much more) would simply not have been possible if Einstein had not developed the theory of general relativity in 1905, well before it had any practical applications, well before anyone had even thought up the idea of telecommunication satellites.

      No need to be upset though, this is a very common misunderstanding about the nature of science and technological progress. I’m just hoping that you (and some others) who read this will come to understand that it has never been, and can never be so simple as “Let’s just focus on the problems we have first”.

      • tfosorcim

        Re-writing history, are we? And from all indications, from snippets of wrong information stored away, to be unleashed on an adoring audience which hangs on every word of your non-erudition.
        Two hard and fast examples of the drivel you spout:

        1. The General Theory of Relativity was polished and finished enough for Dr. Einstein to present it to the world in 1915, not in 1905, as you so authoritatively state..

        2. “… In 1905, people like you criticized him for wasting time developing a theory with no practical applications…”.
        Here, you are in possession of such valuable information that you REALLY need to contact anyone and everyone having anything to do Einstein’s history. Being such on an expert on Einstein, I’m certain that you are aware that the rest of the world believes–wrongly so, according to you–that Einstein toiled alone and in obscurity until, in 1905, he released to the scientific community four papers of such overarching genius that 1905 is referred to, in the scientific community, as ‘the annus mirabilis’ (I’m sure, that with ALL your knowledge, you don’t need to be told what the translation is).
        AND NO, NONE OF THE FOUR PAPERS HAD ANYTHING TO DO WITH THE THEORY OF GENERAL RELATIVITY.

        3. Your regaling us with your knowledge contains more mistakes, but I have a psychological predisposition against “…casting pearls before swine…”

        You really do need to publish your findings regarding Einstein’s social interactions with his peers.
        What other gems of knowledge can you share with us to correct our misunderstanding of the history of science?

        “Never underestimate your own ignorance.”–A. Einstein
        “He can compress the most amount of words into the smallest possible idea better than any man I know.”–Abraham Lincoln

        –A simpleton with only graduate degrees in Electrical Engineering, Physics, and a worker in Research. And one who really does appreciate the sentiments expressed in your last paragraph.

        • JeanLuc

          Ack! You got me!

          I will concede that I was entirely mistaken about 1905. I mixed up the years he published Special Relativity with General Relativity. But I don’t see how that oversight really detracts from the point I was trying to make…. especially since we seem to agree on my last paragraph. So I don’t know why you were so eager to make a fool of me for stating the wrong date.

          My point was simply this: People often criticize research and technology that has no immediate benefits or purposes. This is very short sighted.

          Your comment about a single experiment to see if it was even possible to transmit wi-fi to the moon sounded as though it was coming from someone who thought that it was a waste of time and money if a science experiment did not have immediate applications. Perhaps this is not what you meant, but I certainly think it can be interpreted that way, and so I sought to make that clarification.

          So good on you for catching my error (Honestly, thanks. I really do appreciate being reminded of my own follies). But I think that this experiment is anything but stupid.

          Perhaps you just wanted to make a quick joke, or perhaps you think it is stupid because you know of various scientific details about the project that I do not. But either way I think readers may interpret the comment as “If it does not solve a current problem it is stupid”, and so I sought to point out how silly that view would be.

          – A simpleton with only a graduate degree in Geophysics, and a worker in research, who really does appreciate when someone points out a mistake he makes.

      • Emkay

        Another quote attributed to Einstein was ” Insanity is continuing to perform the same experiment, but expecting a different result” or something like that..

  • MichaelJohnston

    Streaming movies to the moon may work, but surfing the web won’t be as nice. The moon is ~1.3 light seconds from earth so the round-trip request for data will delayed by about 2.6 seconds. Not horrible, but it won’t be “with greater speed than your home network.”

    • BlackAndGold

      The first thing I though when I heard about this was that the latency would be terrible.

    • Dane Curbow

      Yeah, but at least when the request comes back, all of it is coming back and you don’t have to wait or experience lag. Just won’t be very good for playing video games.

  • scottalias

    Big deal, I remember President Nixon called the moon from a landline telephone.

    • Big_Bouy

      or possibly:

      Big deal, I remember President Nixon called the basement from a landline telephone.

      • Josh Pactor

        The “moon landing was faked” conspiracy theory never ceases to amaze me.

        • David J

          Same. I thought the LRO images of the landing sites would shut them up, but alas, they cling to the hoax thing with pathological cult-like zeal.

  • GianniB

    In my early days (born ’61) lunar landings gave me great excitement, then came the austerity of the oil crisis and the need to save energy.
    So, having learned that moon rocks absorb more than 90% of light, and that our satellite always shows us the same side, I imagined to cover it in the center with aluminum foils.
    And have free night illumination – for half days of a month on average.

    • Emkay

      During full direct sunlight, you can safely assume about 100 watts of solar energy per square foot. If you assume 12 hours of sun per day, this equates to 438,000 watt-hours per square foot per year. Based on 27,878,400 square feet per square mile, sunlight bestows a whopping 12.2 trillion watt-hours per square mile per year. Put another way, the solar energy hitting the earth (in one year) exceeds the total energy consumed by all of humanity by a factor of over 20,000 times.

      uh, invest in solar energy companies, now…

  • Carl W Gansen

    I wish NASA would teach Sprint how they did this. Maybe they can utilize it to provide coverage in a major city.

    • Blackened144

      Sprint customers could only be so lucky.. I am lucky enough to have just dumped Sprint, but I was dumb enough to jump ship for T-Mobile.. They are just as bad around here.. Its my own damn fault for not finding out that the signals for both at home and work are so bad that I often cant even detect the network.. Although on Sprint, I was getting off the interstate one day, saw a cell tower why I was waiting at the light, and did a quick speed test. I got about 40Mb/10Mb. At home, on my patio, assuming I could stay connected long enough to finish the test, I was lucky to get 512B/56B throughput. At least Im not on a contract with T-Mobile, so I’ll be jumping on someone elses ship soon enough.

      • BlackAndGold

        I dumped Sprint for Verizon, booh-yah.

      • Emkay

        I need more Kleenex…please stop, you’re killing me..

    • BlackAndGold

      Nailed it.

  • http://www.mazepath.com/uncleal/qz4.htm Uncle Al

    beam a wireless Internet signal across the 238,900 miles That is a 1.28 second pause for transmission in each direction, plus plumbing traversal, plus Doppler shifts for orbital translation and bodies’ differential rotation. The cherry atop the whipped cram is NASA being in charge. Good luck with that.

    • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com Michael Keener

      I like cherries and whipped cram..

  • nikademus

    So, i can’t get a suntan on the moon, but i can not get wifi… Wicked

  • TanvirMH (^-^)

    Theres wifi on the moon and I an setting at home with my phone in the air in order to get reception :/

    • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com Michael Keener

      uh, ‘sitting at home’..

  • Steven Ronald Mallon

    Sweet! I always have dreamt about using my device on the moon!

  • KhawarNehal

    Infrared or wifi ?

  • Marsha Freburger-Gumpf

    All you guys are extraordinarily adorable!

  • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com Sharron Jones

    All that way and I still cant get a decent signal 2 miles from home:(

  • Guest

    And still without clean water and food wifi remains useless. B.t.w. be carefull with the moon and water please. As many people say on someone’s funeral. ”Ashes to ashes brings water to dust.” (Tibetan funerals).

    • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com Michael Keener

      “If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun”. – Dalai Lama

  • Robin Arie Hendrik Van der Kop

    Carefull with the moon’s survace: As many Tibetan Lamah’s heard on their cremation: Ashes to ashes water brings dust.

  • thinh nguyen

    Sound great!!!

  • Charles2424

    They are just getting ready for when Gingrich wants to move there. Hope soon.

  • ArtStoneUS

    I have “one more question” – what is the latency? God makes no NASA exception to the speed of electromagnetic radiation. Anyone who has tried satellite Internet access realizes within a few minutes that 22,500 miles to geosynchronous orbit is a deal breaker. Ping time from Moon to Earth and back (10x as far) would be a minimum of about 2500 ms (2.5 seconds)

  • Ludde

    Maby they have found the Monolit and have to have good contact to Earth while they explore it. Please let it be so!! ^^

  • Ynspektor

    those mad scientists….

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