What is Google’s Project Loon?
Google’s Project Loon is a network of balloons traveling on the edge of space, designed to provide internet connection to people living in rural and remote areas. It will help to fulfill broadband coverage gaps and bring people back online after disasters.
Technology behind Project Loon
Project Loon balloons serve as a sort of aerial network, navigating stratospheric winds and communicating with an area’s wireless provider, ground-based antennas and connectivity with a smartphone.
Project Loon balloons are circling the globe in rings, connecting wirelessly to the Internet via a handful of ground stations, and pass signals to one another in a kind of the daisy chain. Each balloon will act as a wireless station for an area about 25 miles in diameter below it, using a variant of Wi-Fi to provide broadband to anyone with a Google-issued antenna. It will provide the low-cost Internet connection to those people who otherwise wouldn’t have it. The smartphones connection charges will become cheap.
Where Project Loon experiments are launched?
On June 15, 2013 after two years of development, Google unveiled Project Loon at a press conference in Christchurch, New Zealand. Even as prime minister John Key spoke, a few of the 30 antenna-equipped balloons were still floating over the Pacific after having supplied a tiny and temporary bit of Internet access to some 50 local families.
On June 2014, the classrooms of a small town in rural Brazil are connected with the internet.
The technology is used for connecting rural, remote, and underserved areas, and for helping with communications after natural disasters.
The balloon is using LTE technology. Google project balloon is collaborating with mobile service provider companies. A balloon that once took 3 to 4 days to create can now be produced in a just a few hours. Google launches these balloons with automated cranes and can now launch dozens of balloons a day. The experiment shows that these balloons can stay aloft for over a hundred days.
How are the Loon balloons recovered?
A mission control centre has been set up to keep track of the thousands of balloons that will be maneuvering about the globe, guiding them into ideal places to maximize Internet coverage. When an experiment with a balloon is done then, the balloon is landed on the empty balloon preselected recovery zone land. The balloon is then collected for repurpose.