NASA, AWS to stream 4K HD video from outer space

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Prepare to see space like never before: NASA, with the help of Amazon Web Services, will host the first live 4K Ultra HD video stream from outer space, the space agency announced Tuesday.

Hundreds of miles away from earth, NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson will take part in a National Association of Broadcasters Show panel April 26 from the International Space Station, conversing with AWS Elemental CEO and cofounder Sam Blackman in Las Vegas. Video of Whitson will be transmitted at 4K resolution — roughly four-times the resolution of standard 1080p HD devices.

The demonstration is meant to display how NASA scientists will soon be able to share discoveries as they are happening, supported by cloud technology. Of course, to see a 4K stream of the event, viewers need a 4K-ready device.

In this specific showcase, the 4K stream will be encoded with AWS Elemental encoding software on the space station and on the ground at Johnson Space Center in Houston, according to the NAB. AWS acquired Elemental Technologies, a cloud-enabled, software-defined video streaming service in 2015.

“The US space agency is a pioneer in the application of advanced media – including 4K,” a release from the NAB says. “By streaming real-time video that captures images four times the resolution of current HD technology, NASA is enhancing its ability to observe, uncover and adapt new knowledge of orbital and deep space.”

Catch the video at 10:30 a.m. PDT April 26.

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Amazon Web Services (AWS), Cloud, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)