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ICT Spring - 2022

Sony forms new company to develop optical communications for satellites

SOLISS, Sony’s and JAXA’s joint optical link project. Credit: JAXA / Sony CSL

Edinburgh / New York, 6 June 2022. – Sony Group announced that its American subsidiary has formed a new company, Sony Space Communications (SSC) to develop small optical communications devices for satellites.

SSC aims to connect micro satellites in low Earth orbit through laser beams. Optical communications enable high-speed communications with small devices without large antennae or high power output. The company plans to connect satellites with ground stations and also satellites in orbit with each other to enable real-time communications. This means a continuous service from anywhere on the ground to any satellite in space. Optical communications do not require frequency licenses and so are easier to implement than radio communications, the firm said.

Sony Group has been conducting research and development of optical communications systems for years now. Some of its technologies have been tested in space in collaboration with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, JAXA. SSC plans to develop ultra-compact, lightweight, and mass producible optical communications for the space environment.

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