LASERS TO SUBSTITUTE THE BALLOONS

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“Hyper fast, ultra-secure, and highly complex communications networks that span land, sea, air, near space, and deep space.”

– Aalyria

Google’s previous project known as the Alphabet’s Loon project which was aimed to provide internet to rural regions with low connectivity status-a project that could have facilitated many- faced a failure due to numerous technical issues, and was shut down by the company last year. Nevertheless, the tech associated with the project has given forth a new concept which replaces the floating platforms with lasers and clouds to provide internet. The company which inherits Google tech is introduced as Aalyria. CNBC reports that though Alphabet has a minority stake in it, it’s no longer going to be a direct subsidiary of Google’s shell company.

Lasers and clouds

According to the reports, Aalyria has two sublime focuses in this process. One is the Tightbeam, a laser communications system that utilises beams of light to transmit data between base stations and endpoints. Spacetime is the other part. It is the cloud-based software that’s meant to juggle constantly changing connections. In fact, Spacetime was initially designed as supervision to the Loon project. It was intended to predict how the balloons of the Loon’s project were on move and keep the connections between the balloons strong and stable. “Now, its job is predicting when a Tightbeam station (which can either be ground or satellite-based) will have to hand off its connection to a moving object, like a plane or boat” reports The Verge.

According to the reports coming from numerous sources, Aalyria Company has already begun selling its software now and is planning on commencing the sales of Tightbeam hardware next year onwards. The two, software and the hardware are meant to be able to work together or separately. In fact, Spacetime isn’t just limited to laser-based systems.

Tightbeam follows a very similar way of data transmission to that of fiber optic cables. It directs the beams of light from one point to another via reflection. The dichotomy is that Tightbeam does this process simply through plain air without utilising any physical medium as in fiber optic cables. This makes it more flexible and really smooth and easy to be used by the user. The company claims that their system is shockingly fast: “100-1000x faster than anything else available today. That, is the power of frickin’ laser beams — though they do come with some potential reliability downsides that physical fiber doesn’t, which we’ll touch on in a moment” the company has mentioned in the press release.

“Aalyria says it has its own way of dealing with disruptions, which involves compensating for how something like rain or dust that would distort or scatter the light being used to transmit the data (an important consideration when you’re sending that light through the air and not the protected glass strands that make up fiber optic cables” says The Verge.

Aalyria is still small and growing, regardless, it has already attracted numerous investors because of the Tightbeam concept which is very interesting and seems to promising too. Further, the company says that it expects its laser technology to be used in providing services for planes, ships, cellular connectivity, and satellite communications too.

By Induwara Athapattu