Wondering how fast is NASA internet? Well, the National Aeronautics Space Administration is one of the most innovative organizations in the world.
They surely need high-speed and fabric-optic internet speed for their demanding tasks, but how fast exactly is the internet speed?
Back in 2013 after an experiment, NASA measured an internet speed of over 91 gigabits per second, which is an enormous speed for the average user.
NASA’s internet speed is approximately 11,000 Mbps, enabling them to download a 100 GB file in under 10 seconds.
Well does that mean that all employees at NASA enjoy such high internet speed?
Of course not…
About NASA’s Internet (NSN)!
The NSN or “NASA Science Network” is a large network of interconnected machines across the entirety of the US.
This network is used to handle a vast amount of data which is generated by all projects that NASA carries out on a daily basis.
In order for the workflow with a large amount of data to happen quickly, NASA has invested boldly in acquiring high-speed internet.
In order to reach the highest internet speeds measured NASA uses strategic location bases for the facility to enwrap enormous internet speeds.
NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center!
One of these high-internet speed facilities is NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center where the internet speed is about 100 gigabits.
To put this into perspective this is about 100,000 times faster than the internet we use at home, which is about 100 – 200 Mbps on a wireless network.
How Fast is NASA Internet Speed – Really?
Well, internet speed can be measured in several ways based on the type of data that the organization is working with.
This means that the NASA internet speed is not the same on their entire network so let’s learn more!
NASA Internet Speed Comparison!
Here’s a comparison of internet speeds and how fast we can download with them:
|< 91 gigabits
|100 GB File = 8 seconds
|Average US Internet
|∼ 50 megabits
|Download & Upload
|100 GB File = ∼ 5 hours
|∼ 400 gigabits
|100 GB File = 0.2 seconds
|Fastest Commerical SCInet
|∼ 2.5 terabits
|100 GB File = 0.00.. Seconds(hardly calculable)
|Fastest Exchange(DI-CIX Frankfurt)
|∼ 47.1 terabits
|Internet Content Delivery
|100 GB File = instant
As you can see, NASA is far from having the fastest internet in the world, since such technology is typically utilized by the military first.
However, downloading a 100 GB file for a second seems impossible, but NASA surely utilizes these speeds to transfer files much larger in size.
NASA Internet is Even Faster!
The 91 gigabits internet speed was measured during a test, but according to recent sources some other NASA facilities utilize even higher internet speeds for various tasks.
Here are some examples of even faster NASA internet speed facilities:
- JET Propulsion Laboratory in California – 300 gigabits
- Ames Research Center in California – 400 gigabits
When we take the fastest US commercial internet speed from Google Fiber, we’re only at 2 Gpbs which is nothing compared to NASA’s internet speed.
Well, let’s visualize these things!
How Fast is NASA Internet? (Comparison Chart)
To visualize how faster is the NASA internet compared to our home internet or even some commercial business internet speeds, check the chart below:
How NASA Internet Is That Fast?
They have a provider which is capable of delivering such high-speed internet.
Compared to small businesses, 91 gigabits is quite fast and to be honest unnecessary for companies that aren’t responsible for server hosting or data centers.
However, NASA’s internet is not the fastest in the world and there are systems up to 17 Tbps, which is about 200 times faster than NASA’s.
They are used for combined data centers where an extreme amount of data has to be transferred equally and saved in raid storage.
For the supplier and for NASA to utilize such high speeds of internet, they use a new technology called optical networking.
This method uses light waves to send data protocols rather than signals using electricity.
This not only allows extremely high internet speeds but also enables large-distancing communication between operational servers.
This technology reaches much higher speeds but is also dependent on other factors that the operating companies have to engage with.
How Fast is NASA’s WiFi Speed?
The WiFi speed and the actual internet speed are two entirely different aspects and the NASA employees, probably don’t utilize 91 gigabits through the WiFi.
The speed of the wireless network depends on the network router (modem) and the device’s capabilities.
Can WiFi Be That Fast?
For example, with a network router with capabilities of up to 200 Mbps, even if the connected internet source delivers more than 200 Mbps, the WiFi wouldn’t reach this speed.
The WiFi signal from the router can only work as the router, hence the true internet speed won’t reflect.
Does NASA Use Fast Routers?
Essentially for office work, NASA wouldn’t use WiFi, to begin with. The workstation responsible for important tasks is always connected via cable to a modem, hence all WiFi limitations are not an issue.
Again, this doesn’t mean that NASA occasionally uses 91 gigabits of internet speed for ordinary tasks and workflow.
In facilities where the internet is not an important aspect, they perhaps utilize normal routers with up to 200 Mbps wireless network seeds.
Note: The fastest and most-expensive routers only reach up to 11 gigabits, which is only about a 10th of NASA’s internet speed.
Why NASA Needs That Fast Internet Speed?
NASA’s internet is one of the fastest in the world, thanks to advanced networking and protocol technologies.
They require such high speeds in order to be capable of handling huge amounts of data generated by projects, missions, tests, and most-importantly space exploration.
NASA Network Protection?
There are a lot of NASA security protocols against various cyber and networking threats.
This provides exceptional resilience and encryption in the form of Firewalls, security protocols, and much more internet theft measures.
In addition, NASA utilizes the so-called SDN (Software-Defined-Networking), which dynamically reroutes data for easier handling.
This covers more traffic faster and more efficiently when compared to an internet network that does not involve such optimizations.
One More Thing!
This is not everything, in order for NASA’s internet to not ever be impacted by overwhelming traffic NASA also uses many priority tools.
For example, NASA saves frequently used information closer to the user in order to prevent long-distance travel, for resilient operation.
Note: NASA relies on innovations and cutting-edge technology and the internet speed is a prime example of one.
Can You Have NASA Internet Speed at Home?
Now that we’ve learned how fast is the internet at NASA, let’s learn more about achieving these speeds at home and whether it’s possible or not.
Well, reaching NASA’s internet speed is impossible since commercial providers do not offer such high speeds.
The next step is to purchase a router with enough WiFi capability to be able to also transmit that
internet speed also on the wireless network. Then you can perform a free speed test online to check your internet speeds and compare them to NASA (which would be laughable).
Here are some of the fastest (commercial) internet suppliers in the US:
Note: The fastest commercial internet suppliers are about one 5th of NASA’s internet speed.
Compare Your Internet to NASA’s Speeds?
Even though this might be pointless if you’re not an organization, you can’t compare your home internet with NASA’s internet speed.
However, you can measure your internet speed at home using a free online speed test tool.
Tip: The tool would show you internet speed in Mbps, so compare your results with the table above with various internet speeds across the US.
Now we’ve learned how fast is NASA internet and NASA WiFi and how unneeded are those network speeds for the average user.
NASA’s fastest (measured) internet speed is 91 gigabits but other NASA facilities reported the use of even faster networking speeds.