Router In The Sky

This story reminds me of that famous Alan Parsons Project song… (okay go ahead and make your ageist jokes!) A bunch of Cisco engineers have taken company’s mobile access router (typically used by first responders) and scotch taped it to a low-orbit satellite and sent it heavenwards. (Results of the experiment here in PDF form) Man did I miss this story….

Apparently, the router has been up there for two years, proving that commercial IP technology can work with satellites. Talk about IP everywhere. Maybe we can make VoIP calls direct to the “big man” and ask him for more “bandwidth.” On a more serious tip, the commodity off the shelf technologies could have far reaching impact in the commercial satellite space, not to mention give a big boost to NASA and department of defense.

“We needed to put a stake in the ground and have something to talk about from a technology perspective,” says Rick Sanford, director of Cisco’s Global Space Initiatives group. Routers in space hold promise for future satellite-based broadband technologies, which could make wide-area data network services ubiquitous and more robust than current satellite data services, Sanford says.

More details @ Network World and CLEO site and @ Cisco

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