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Facebook is building a helicopter to help deliver internet access in emergencies

by Fox Tech

After building a solar-powered plane to help deliver internet access nearly two years ago, Facebook is once again building another aircraft to deploy the internet -- this time, in the form of a helicopter.

Unveiled at its F8 developer conference, the Mark Zuckerberg-led social network said the helicopter, known as the "Tether-tenna," would provide internet access and could be deployed for months in the case of an emergency.

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"It's a small helicopter tethered to a fiber line and power—essentially, insta-infrastructure," Facebook's Yael Maguire, wrote in a blog post. "If the fiber line is still good to a certain point, we can make a virtual tower by flying a Tether-tenna a few hundred feet from the ground. When completed, this technology will be able to be deployed immediately and operate for months at a time to bring back connectivity in case of an emergency — ensuring the local community can stay connected while the in-ground connectivity is under repair."

Facebook did not say whether it would build more helicopters or if it would partner with other companies to do the work. 

Tether-tenna is part of Facebook's Telecom Infra Project, which includes the aforementioned solar plane, known as Aquila, as well as Terragraph, which helps boost internet signals in dense urban areas.

http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2017/04/19/facebook-is-building-helicopter-to-help-deliver-internet-access-in-emergencies.html


Written by News Desk


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