Indian-origin Nokia exec Nishant Batra to set up 4G network on Moon

Nishant Batra, a top executive at Nokia, is leading the project to set up the first-ever 4G cellular network on the Moon. Sharma was born in Delhi and studied at a university in Madhya Pradesh before moving abroad for higher courses, according to a report in The Times of India. 

Finnish telecommunications giant Nokia was in 2020 selected by NASA to build the first 4G network on Moon for Artemis — its 2024 mission to put humans back on the Moon. Communication will be a key component of the mission. 

Nokia said that the innovations of Bell Labs, its research arm, would be used to build and deploy “the first ultra-compact, low-power, space-hardened, end-to-end LTE solution on the lunar surface.” 

Batra, Nokia’s chief strategy and technology officer, told The Times of India that a lunar network could be a reality within a few months. 

“The aim is to get this done over the coming months… (But) since it is a NASA project, I can’t give you the exact date of launch. But it’s a matter of just a few months, not years,” he was quoted as saying by the newspaper. 

Batra told The Times of India that astronauts will be able to make calls to earth. 

However, he added: “I’m not sure it will be legally allowed for a long, long time,” he said. “These (networks) are very secure for the system, highly secured, (and) not for public use.” 

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