Data centers in space | CIO | Space

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Imagine a world in which data centers were deployed in space.

Using a satellite networking system, data would be collected from Earth, then sent to space for processing and storage. The system would use photonics and optical technology, dramatically cutting down on power consumption and boosting data transmission speeds. The Earth’s weather or natural disasters would no longer interrupt communications.

Does this sound like something out of science fiction? Well, it’s very real, with trials and demonstrations underway this year and a launch planned for 2025.

Why put data centers in space?

 Current technology primarily emphasizes the enhancement of information processing speed and capacity.

However, this approach has its constraints, particularly with the substantial growth of AI, placing significant strain on networks, computational resources, and storage, pushing them to their limits.  

This has huge implications on the amount of power consumption, which is hard on the environment.  Even our current communications infrastructure doesn’t always meet the needs of users.

Mobile networks and internet connections go down – with outages stemming from natural disasters, bad weather, human error or network overload. As we look to the future, it’s time for new innovations to meet current and future needs for data and computing resources.

Space provides an answer. NTT is working with SKY Perfect JSAT to develop a satellite networking system called the Space Integrated Computing Network to process and store data in space.

Each satellite will be equipped with computing functions that can process data, connecting to a network of satellites of optical communications that perform the role of a data center. This removes the need to send data back to Earth for processing and analysis, which slows data traffic and consumes a lot of power.

How the Space Integrated Computing Network will work

These space data centers will be…

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