In space, internet access works in a similar way to how it works on Earth. However, there are some differences due to the unique challenges of providing internet access in a space environment.
On Earth, the internet is accessed through a network of interconnected computers and servers that are connected by cables or wirelessly through various technologies such as WiFi. In space, however, there is no infrastructure like this in place, so the internet must be accessed through satellites.
There are several types of satellites that can provide internet access in space, including geostationary satellites, which orbit the Earth at a fixed distance and are used for communication purposes, and low Earth orbit (LEO) satellites, which orbit closer to the Earth and are used for a variety of applications, including internet access.
To access the internet from a satellite, a device on the ground or in space, such as a satellite dish or antenna, must be used to send and receive data to and from the satellite. The satellite then relays the data back to Earth, where it is routed through the internet network as it would be on the ground.
Is there an internet connection at the International Space Station (ISS)?
In space, internet access is often slower and less reliable than it is on Earth due to the distance the data must travel and the potential for interference or other issues. However, advances in satellite technology are constantly being made, and internet access in space is becoming more reliable and widely available.
Previously, astronauts used to send personal emails or messages directly via NASA from ISS. After 2010, NASA provided internet facilities on the space station that are available on computer nodes and are used only for work communications, research purposes, and live stream uplinks with NASA. In their spare time, astronauts use Twitter or send emails, but because internet is limited, they use it wisely with restrictions and limited bandwidth and speeds. There is no wifi like we have it on Earth; astronauts use computers on board to access the internet.The ping rate on the ISS is also very high.
But now, following its most recent upgrade, ISS now has better internet than the majority of us. It will be helpful for future missions to the Moon, to Mars, and other deep-space destinations. It's especially important.