High-speed laser internet for Taara project connects two cities by air
Optical cables are great for sending over the Internet, but sometimes they just can’t be used. Company X from Alphabet Inc. It is developing a wireless laser internet as part of the Taara project, which transmits the internet quickly and wirelessly. In a recent test, they succeeded in connecting the two African capitals of Brazzaville and Kinshaso, which are separated by the Congo River.
Among other things, Google’s parent company, Alphabet Inc. , a major effort to develop Project Loon’s wireless internet. It was based on high-altitude balloons, which were supposed to transmit the Internet by means of lasers. After promising tests, the project was surprisingly completed in January of this year, due to astronomical costs.
The hopes placed in balloons have been dashed, but Alphabet experts are still betting on the internet with lasers. It has just moved from the stratosphere to the Earth’s surface. Company X from Alphabet, which specializes in revolutionary technologies, is working on the Taara project, which aims to connect places via terrestrial laser Internet that is problematic to connect to the Internet in the classic way.
Project Tara recently underwent a technical test in which high-speed laser internet was connected to two African capitals – Brazzaville, the capital of the Republic of Congo, and Kinshas, the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. These cities constitute a metropolitan area with a total population of about 12 million. They are less than 5 kilometers apart.
The problem is that these cities are separated by the mighty Congo River. The Internet connection between them is provided by optical cables, which nevertheless stretch for a distance of 400 km. This significantly increases the cost of internet connection in the area.
The laser internet test for the Taara project lasted for 20 days. During that time, nearly 700 terabytes of data were transmitted, with speeds of up to 20 Gbit/s. Data transmission by laser beam through open space will probably never be a thousand percent reliable, due to flying animals, rain, fog and other complications of various origins. However, it turns out that such a connection is still very reliable and stable.
The laser beam used was within the thickness of the chopstick. He hit a target with a size of 5 cm from a distance of 10 km. The receiver can automatically maintain contact even if the laser beam moves back and forth. In some parts of the world, even this is not enough to guarantee acceptable reliability of optical wireless communication. However, the Taara project team notes that in most parts of the world it is possible to achieve availability of at least 90% of this service during the year. It seems that the laser internet could soon become an interesting alternative for those areas where they have trouble connecting to the traditional internet.
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