Project Loon Going Sky High to Deliver Internet Services

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My last post was all about solar airplanes taking flight. Well, it seems we’re on a roll with airborne innovation. If you haven’t gotten up to speed on Google’s Project Loon you should.

Project Loon is a somewhat pedestrian looking balloon that floats into the stratosphere – twice as high as airplanes and weather balloons. But what’s inside is as innovative as it gets.

In a very simple explanation, Loon balloons float where they’re needed by rising or descending into a layer of wind that blows in the direction they want it to travel. On the ground, a special Internet antenna attached to a building will send and receive signals to and from the balloon network to provide an alternative pipe to the Internet.

As a backhaul system this is a very nifty and flexible “base station in the sky” alternative to ground-based systems. Given we’re big believers in smart signal boosters, I am especially taken with the fact that these smallish devices have the intelligence to figure out where to go and when. Not to mention the idea that it will bring services to a lot of folks who currently can’t get Internet coverage.

Of course it still doesn’t answer the age-old problem of how to get that signal indoors from the outdoor antenna. Of course, that’s something we know a lot about! But Project Loon sure helps put Internet access out there in a whole new way.

When you consider the potential of Project Loon, what excites you most?

By the Cel-Fi Team

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