April 20, 2024

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The Artemis II will call home from the moon using lasers

The Artemis II will call home from the moon using lasers

[NASA] The astronauts will test Orion Artemis II Optical Communication System (O2O) To send live 4K HD video back to Earth from the Moon. The system will also support enhanced image, sound, control channels, and science data delivery.

On board Orion, the space station includes an optical module, modem, and control system. The optical unit features a four inch telescope on a biaxial mount. The modem modulates the digital information on the laser beams for transmission back to Earth, and demodulates the data from the laser beams received from Earth. The control system interacts with Orin’s onboard avionics systems to control and point the communications telescope.

On Earth, facilities including JPL and the White Sands complex will maintain broadband optical communication links with Orion. Information received from Orion will be transmitted to mission operations, scientists and researchers.

NASA agency Laser Communication Relay Display (LCRD) Shows the benefits of optical communications. Traditionally, missions have relied on radio communications, but improved technology will better serve space missions that generate and collect increasing amounts of data. Optical communication solutions can provide 10 to 100 times the bandwidth of RF systems. Other improvements may include increased link distances, higher efficiency, reduced interference, improved security, and reduced size and weight. Our brief history of optical communications demonstrates many of these advantages.


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