NASA Streams Cat Video From Millions of Miles Away

Photo by Vincentiu Solomon on Unsplash

( – On Monday, December 18, NASA announced the first ever usage of a laser in order to stream a video of an orange cat back to the Earth from around 19 million miles away. 

The agency noted that in order to stream the video of “Taters”, a tabby cat, they needed to use a flight laser transceiver. The 15-second ultra-high definition video was sent from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), and it required 101 seconds before it could reach planet Earth. This is part of NASA’s Deep Space Optical Communications experiment which is looking at the possible establishment of an optical communication that would extend beyond the current Earth-Moon system.

NASA Deputy Administrator Pam Melroy revealed in a statement that in order to reach their “exploration and science goals,” they needed to work on extending their bandwidth. She said the agency is looking forward to continuing to advance this type of technology in service of future missions.

With the transmission of these videos, researchers are hopeful that they are going to show that it is possible to transmit broadband videos and large data volumes to Earth from deep space. 

NASA also noted that Taters, who is a NASA JPL employee’s pet, was not physically in space. The video that they used for the purposes of this experiment was showing Taters following a red laser pointer dot. It was first uploaded to NASA Psyche spacecraft before the spacecraft was launched on October 13. 

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