- Safar Pokharel
Nepali Vision | While the whole world has become a small village in terms of technologies and trends, almost two-third of the world’s population does not have Internet access yet. Google has come up with such an out of the box concept where it will build is a network of balloons traveling on the edge of space. It is designed to connect people in rural and remote areas and at not cost for the consumers. It is a high hoped project for Google, which will help fill coverage gaps, and bring people back online after natural other disasters like earthquakes. The name of this project is 'Project Loon'.
According to Google, Project Loon will have balloons as the backbones, which will float in the stratosphere of the earth. The stratosphere is the second major layer of Earth's atmosphere, just above the troposphere, and below the mesosphere. At moderate latitudes the stratosphere is situated between about 10–13 km and 50 km of altitude above the earth's surface. Those balloons will float twice as high as airplanes and the clouds and will not collide with any other flying objects. In the stratosphere, there are many layers of wind, and each layer of wind has different magnitude of direction and speed. Loon balloons go where they’re needed by rising or descending into a layer of wind blowing in the desired direction of travel. People can connect to the balloon's network using a special Internet antenna attached to their buildings. The signal bounces from this antenna up to the balloon network, and then down to the global Internet on Earth. In short, those balloon will work like floating satellites above the rural areas, where people can connect with the devices installed on their rooftop to access the free internet.
Google's this project, Project Loon, began in June 2013 with an experimental pilot in New Zealand, where a small group of Project Loon pioneers tested Loon technology. The results of the pilot test have been used to improve this technology, and continued refinements are now being done and tested in an ongoing series of research flights in California’s Central Valley.
Let's hope for the best and wish success for this project. That day seems to be not very far when everyone on the earth can access free Internet with floating balloons. (photo source: internet)