ISS to test interplanetary communications system

ISS (International Space Station) has installed a new technology known as the Delay/Disruption Tolerant Networking, which may allow the creation of internet in space.

The DTN was recently installed onto the ISS, with the future predicting bases on Mars and the Moon this technology would help off planet bases connect to Earth. The best part is that the DTN may be able to be used to create internet for most of the Solar System.

DTN uses an automatic “store and forward” data network that stores packs of data in nodes that are then forwarded through communication paths then re-bundled for the final destination. This would store data if a connection is severed or interrupted and forward the data using relay stations.

The DTN was added to the Telescience Resource Kit on the ISS, which will be used to test messages sent between the ISS and ground stations.

“Our experience with DTN on the space station leads to additional terrestrial applications especially for mobile communications in which connections may be erratic and discontinuous,”said Dr. Vinton G. Cerf, a visiting scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory working on the DTN.

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