NASA Spacecraft Beams Cat Video To Earth From 19,000,000 Miles Away


Ilan Hulkower Contributor
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The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) beamed an ultra-high definition streaming video featuring a cat to Earth from a historic distance in space.

The space to Earth streaming experiment occurred Dec. 11 using cutting edge technology called a flight laser transceiver from a NASA spacecraft, which was 19 million miles away from the Earth, reported. (RELATED: Perseverance Rover Discovers Evidence Of Ancient Lake On Mars, Reaches 1,000 Days On Red Planet)

The signal for the 15-second cat video took 101 seconds to reach the Hale Telescope at Caltech’s Palomar Observatory in California and was sent “live” to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, according to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory press release.

The cat featured in the historic video is Taters, a 3-year-old orange tabby owned by a NASA employee, The Associated Press (AP) reported.

The successful test streamed video at a speed “faster than most broadband internet connections on Earth,” Ryan Rogalin, the project’s receiver electronics leader, said in the press release. (RELATED: Perseverance Rover Discovers Evidence Of Ancient Lake On Mars, Reaches 1,000 Days On Red Planet)

“This accomplishment underscores our commitment to advancing optical communications as a key element to meeting our future data transmission needs,” said Pam Melroy, NASA Deputy Administrator, according to the press release. “Increasing our bandwidth is essential to achieving our future exploration and science goals, and we look forward to the continued advancement of this technology and the transformation of how we communicate during future interplanetary missions.”

“When we achieved first light, we were excited, but also cautious. This is a new technology, and we are experimenting with how it works,” Ken Andrews, the project flight operations leader, stated.

NASA tweeted this accomplishment “will pave the way for high-data-rate communications in support of the next giant leap: sending humans to Mars.”