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Sony is venturing into space. The organization set up a new company to develop devices for laser communications. Laser signals are suitable for transferring data among satellites and ground stations.

The devices will be offered by Sony Space Communications, a new subsidiary. Laser communication takes place via light signals. Light signals are much more efficient for space travel than radio, the traditional alternative. According to NASA, it takes about nine weeks to send a map of Mars to Earth by radio. Lasers cut the time to roughly nine days. Sony’s upcoming devices will enable communications among satellites and ground stations.

Sony did not reveal when the first devices are available. IT’s unclear whether the organization has customers lined up. Lastly, we don’t how much money was invested in the project. The target group, however, is clear. At this time, there are thousands of satellites orbiting Earth. A significant portion is owned by large commercial organizations, including Amazon and SpaceX. They use satellites to offer internet in places inaccessible for broadband. Sony wants to work with them.

“The amount of data used in orbit is also increasing year by year, but the amount of available radio waves is limited”, the new company’s president, Kyohei Iwamoto, said in a statement.

Space race

Sony is expected to be one of the many manufacturers focusing on space in the coming decennium. SpaceX, Elon Musk’s space company, wants to expand its network to at least 42,000 satellites. At the moment, the fleet consists of 1,800 units. Each new satellite is an opportunity for partners. Apple and Google are already working with SpaceX. Google provides network technology and Apple delivers hardware for research.

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