Laser Transmission Breakthrough: NASA's Historic 'First Light' from 10 Million Miles Away
NASA's Psyche spacecraft beamed a near-infrared laser 10 million miles into space, marking a pioneering achievement for the agency.
The laser carried encoded test data and was transmitted from Psyche to Caltech’s Palomar Observatory in California.
This transmission spanned a distance 40 times greater than that between the Earth and the Moon.
In comparison, SpaceX's recent Starship voyage reached around 93 miles into space.
The laser transmission occurred on Nov. 14, using cutting-edge technology from Psyche's laser transceiver.
NASA’s Deep Space Optical Communications (DSOC) experiment facilitated this historic "first light" event.
The success holds promise for enhanced data transmission in the solar system, supporting future exploration missions.
DSOC aims for data rates 10 to 100 times faster than current radio frequency systems.
Near-infrared lasers pack data into tighter waves, enabling increased data reception at ground stations.
This advancement will benefit human and robotic missions and improve scientific instrument resolution, aiding future space exploration.