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Space & Astronomy

NASA beams Mona Lisa to the Moon

January 19, 2013 | Comment icon 21 comments



Image Credit: Leonardo da Vinci
Leonardo Da Vinci's masterpiece has gone further than ever before thanks to a well-timed laser.
Scientists at NASA accomplished the feat of beaming the famous painting to the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter over a distance of 240,000 miles using a laser. It is the first time communication with a laser has been achieved over such a long distance, a major advancement in interplanetary laser communications technology.

"In the near future, this type of simple laser communication might serve as a backup for the radio communication that satellites use. In the more distance future, it may allow communication at higher data rates than present radio links can provide," said researcher David Smith.
Call it the ultimate in high art: Using a well-timed laser, NASA scientists have beamed a picture of Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece, the Mona Lisa, to a powerful spacecraft orbiting the moon, marking a first in laser communication.


Source: Space.com | Comments (21)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #12 Posted by King Cobra 1408 10 years ago
that's pretty cool not sure what any good it will bring though.considering its "NASA" anyway what happens to the painting was that the real picture or just a copy?cause if its the real thing wow that's a waste!!!
Comment icon #13 Posted by freetoroam 10 years ago
that's pretty cool not sure what any good it will bring though.considering its "NASA" anyway what happens to the painting was that the real picture or just a copy?cause if its the real thing wow that's a waste!!! The real Mona Lisa is on permanent display at the Musee du Louvre, I do not believe even NASA can get it off the French that easily.
Comment icon #14 Posted by King Fluffs 10 years ago
They should beam a troll face up their next.
Comment icon #15 Posted by Glenville86 10 years ago
Hope no aliens intercepted it. I can just hear them saying to skip that planet - the women there sure are ugly. Just kidding. :-)
Comment icon #16 Posted by freetoroam 10 years ago
Hope no aliens intercepted it. I can just hear them saying to skip that planet - the women there sure are ugly. Just kidding. :-) Yeah, she was not the most beautiful of women out there, but look on the bright side, it could have been Katie Price!
Comment icon #17 Posted by skookum 10 years ago
Yeah, she was not the most beautiful of women out there, but look on the bright side, it could have been Katie Price! I wish they would send the real Katie Price to the moon. She almost ran me off the road the other day in her chavvy pink Range Rover.
Comment icon #18 Posted by Erudite Celt 10 years ago
User a laser to sent information to space explorers at light speed is not a waste of money. Radio waves travel at light speed so we've been doing it a while!
Comment icon #19 Posted by Erudite Celt 10 years ago
I think a lot of people have misunderstood the article. They did not project a picture of the Mona Lisa onto the moon from earth! Nor did they project a picture of the Mona Lisa onto a craft orbiting the moon from earth! They transmitted a digital signal of the Mona Lisa via pulsed laser light to the moon orbiting satellite that relayed the signal back to earth. If you are reading this via fibre optic broadband then your router is receiving the same sort of signal the satellite received only it was getting the signal via direct line of sight and not a cable [obviously]. If your thinking of thi... [More]
Comment icon #20 Posted by Erudite Celt 10 years ago
It is very fascinating. All the money we spend on fancy high tech computers and mobiles will be replaced in years to come with the new laser types. With this in mind, i think computer and mobile phone companies should severely reduce their prices now, seeing that we will have to replace it all when these companies tell us that they are worthless because the laser technology has now taken over. If your on fibre optic broadband then you already have the technology!
Comment icon #21 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf 10 years ago
If your on fibre optic broadband then you already have the technology! Not really. There is a huge difference between sending a laser signal along a fibre optic cable between two fixed points and transmitting a laser signal directly to a fast moving satellite a quarter of a million miles away.


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