Recently in the Communication Satellites Category


Thought your Internet speeds were slow? Try being a space scientist for a day. The vast distances involved will throttle data rates to a trickle. You're lucky if a spacecraft can send more than a few megabits per second (Mbps) -- a pittance even by dial-up standards.

Sentinel 1A and Alphasat Link Up By laser

Marking a first in space, Sentinel-1A and Alphasat have linked up by laser stretching almost 36 000 km across space to deliver images of Earth just moments after they were captured.

Our world is becoming rapidly connected and as humanity ventures off planet they will take their appetites for LOLz, cat memes, silly YouTube videos, and iTunes with them making a need for space-based internet and other broadband services a reality according to panelists speaking on "The Future of Space-Based Communications" at the AIAA SPACE 2014 Forum in San Diego.

Laser Demonstration on LADEE Completed

The completion of the 30-day Lunar Laser Communication Demonstration or LLCD mission has revealed that the possibility of expanding broadband capabilities in space using laser communications is as bright as expected.

"NASA is announcing opportunities for academia, industry and government agencies to develop and carry out research and technology demonstrations on the International Space Station using the newly installed Space Communications and Navigation (SCAN) testbed. There are two announcements of opportunity. The SCAN Testbed Experiment Opportunity invites industry and other government agencies to enter into Space Act Agreements with NASA to use the space station's SCAN platform. The SCAN Testbed Cooperative Agreement Notice invites academia to develop proposals to use the orbiting laboratory's SCAN testbed research capabilities. NASA expects the first demonstrations by late 2013 or early 2014. These opportunities will allow researchers to develop new software according to the Space Telecommunications Radio Standard (STRS) architecture for radios and reconfigure how radios communicate in space." More

Innovators Sought for DARPA Satellite Servicing Program, DARPA

"More than $300 billion worth of satellites are estimated to be in the geosynchronous orbit (GEO--22,000 miles above the earth). Many of these satellites have been retired due to normal end of useful life, obsolescence or failure; yet many still have valuable components, such as antennas, that could last much longer than the life of the satellite. When satellites in GEO "retire," they are put into a GEO disposal or "graveyard" orbit. DARPA's Phoenix program seeks to develop technologies to cooperatively harvest and re-use valuable components from retired, nonworking satellites in GEO and demonstrate the ability to create new space systems at greatly reduced cost."

New NASA Game: Space Communications

NASA Releases New Interactive Space Communications Game

"NASA has released an interactive, educational video game called NetworKing that depicts how the Space Communication and Navigation (SCaN) network operates. Developed by the Information Technology Office at NASA's Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, Calif., NetworKing gives players an insider's perspective into how astronauts, mission controllers and scientists communicate during space missions."

According to the iTunes store: Intelsat is the leading provider of fixed satellite services worldwide. Intelsat supplies video, data and voice connectivity for leading media and communications companies, Internet Service Providers and government organizations. Intelsat's terrestrial network of eight teleports and 28,000 miles of fiber complements a satellite fleet of over 50 satellites.

The Intelsat app provides:
- Satellite coverage maps for the entire Intelsat fleet, searchable by region, orbital location, or alphabetically.
- EIRP contours within graphical maps
- Key satellite parameters
- Email and wireless print capabilities
- Add satellites to your Favorites
- Worldwide Sales, Teleport and Operations Center contact information

Download the free app at the iTunes store

To support upcoming robotic and human exploration needs, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) anticipates that it and others will need to implement a unified architecture for internetworked communication and navigation services that span the solar system. Unlike the terrestrial internet, a future Solar System Internet (SSI) must be capable of accommodating intermittent connectivity, long or variable delays, asymmetric data rates, and high data loss rates. The underlying capability that enables the SSI is commonly referred to as "Disruption-Tolerant Networking" (DTN). The SSI will employ both opportunistic and scheduled communications paths to optimize routing among nodes of the SSI, while maintaining low communications overhead and data processing load.

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