Going ahead with its internet-via-drone project, Facebook has finally conceived its first full-scale drone, which has the wingspan of a Boeing 737 and will provide Internet access to the most remote parts of the world.
Facebook will make hundreds of semi-autonomous drones which will fly 17 miles above the Earth to provide wireless internet access to the four billion people currently unable to get online.
Interestingly, the drones are powered by solar energy and can fly for about 90 days in a single go. Moreover, it will hover at around 20 to 30 km high altitude than commercial planes to avoid any happening and perhaps to tackle weather issues. It will use lasers to send Internet signals to stations on the ground.
Because the planes must constantly move to stay aloft, they will circle a three kilometer radius. During the day, they will float up to 30 km and at night will drift down to 20 km to conserve energy.
The project is part of a broader effort by Facebook called Aquila, that also contemplates using satellites and other high-tech gear to deliver Internet connectivity to hundreds of millions of people living in regions too remote for conventional service.
Facebook said that it does not intend to become any sort of Internet Service Provider. The new drones will be used to expand the connectivity across the globe.
On the other hand, Google is experimenting with high-altitude balloons and satellites in a program that has similar goals., with its most recent testing taking place in Sri Lanka