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NASA Developing Technology That Could Make Communication in Deep Space More Efficient

Dec 02, 2016 04:05 AM EST
International Space Station
NASA recently confirmed the development a communication device that combines two proven technologies -- NASA's Spacecube and the Navigator Global Positioning System flight receiver.
(Photo : NASA via Getty Images)

Despite the strides made in space technology, communication outside of the Earth's atmosphere remains a struggle. Transmitting data from one point in space to the other still takes a considerable amount of time. However, it seems like a recently unveiled technology might be able to make space correspondence a lot more convenient.

NASA, as reported by Fox News, recently confirmed the development a communication device that combines two proven technologies -- NASA's Spacecube and the Navigator Global Positioning System flight receiver. The new technology called, NavCube, uses C-rays in order to send data over vast distances. With the computing power of the SpaceCube, scientists and experts from NASA, are certain the NavCube would greatly improve communication in both low and high altitudes.

""This new product is a poster child for our research and development efforts. Both SpaceCube and Navigator already proved their value to NASA. Now the combination of the two gives NASA another tool. Also, the possibility that it might help demonstrate X-ray communications in space - a technology in which we also have interest - is particularly exciting" quipped Peter Hughes, chief technology Officer of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland, USA, in the agency's official NavCube announcement.

Barry Geldzahler, NASA's chief technologist for Space Communication and Navigation, has since explained the process in which the NavCube was developed. According to Geldzahler, the idea sprung forth following the success of the Navigator Global Positioning Sustem in providing the highest-altitude GPS data. The team's only problem surrounding combining SpaceCube Navigator is making it small enough for a spacecraft:

"We knew that processing speed from SpaceCube and the tracking capability of Navigator could be a powerful combination. The next task was to figure out how to make it smaller and increase the sensitivity for more flexible mission applications."

Before the development of the NavCube, NASA's deep space network communication has remained virtually the same since the 1990s - duting the Voyager Interstellar Mission.

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