Facebook’s Connectivity Lab is building drones, satellites and lasers to deliver the internet to everyone. The aim is to make internet available to the two thirds of the world’s population that doesn’t have it.
The team consists of leading experts in aerospace and communications technology, including from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab and Ames Research Center. The team also consists of members from Ascenta, a small UK-based company whose founders created early versions of Zephyr, which became the world’s longest flying solar-powered unmanned aircraft.
They have been working on solar-powered high altitude, long endurance aircraft that can stay aloft for months with an aim to provide reliable internet access to suburban areas in limited geographical regions. Low-Earth orbit and geosynchronous satellites are being planned for providing internet access to lower density areas.