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Why Use Satellites for Communication?

In the earth's satellite family, in addition to the moon, there are many kinds of artificial satellites. At present, it is common for people to use satellites for communication, reconnaissance, navigation and meteorological observation.


1. Why use satellite communication?


We know that microwave communication adopts relay method to realize long-distance communication by establishing relay station. However, this approach also has major drawbacks. Because there are places on earth where it is impossible to build a relay station. For example, the distance from Beijing, China to New York, USA is tens of thousands of kilometers, separated by the turbulent Pacific Ocean. If you build a relay station every 40 to 50 kilometers, you have to build more than 200 stations at sea, which is impossible. 


The idea of using satellites for communication was first proposed by British scientist and prophet Clark. In February 1945, Clark published a scientific prediction paper "Extraterrestrial Relay Stations". He proposed to use artificial earth satellites as relay stations for transmitting microwave information, and put the satellites in a synchronous orbit about 36,000 kilometers above the equator. In this way, the microwaves relayed by the relay station on a satellite can cover about one-third of the earth's surface. If three equidistant synchronous satellites are deployed, global satellite communication can be achieved.


2. Satellite communication network covers the world


On April 6, 1965, the first communications satellite was successfully launched. Since then, human beings have truly established a "relay station" in the sky.


Satellite communication is that a ground station transmits a signal to a satellite, which is processed by satellite amplification, frequency conversion, etc., and then forwarded to another ground station.


Generally speaking, after this "jump" of the satellite, the farthest communication distance can reach 13,000 kilometers, and three "jumps" can circle the earth. Communication satellites are condescending, so they are not limited by any terrain conditions, even in deserts, mountains, oceans and islands, etc., as long as there is a "small ground base station" with a diameter of a few tenths of a meter, it can communicate, and the cost of communication is related to communication. Distance doesn't matter.


Some people have calculated that the microwave signal emitted from a satellite can cover 40% of the earth's area, which is equivalent to setting up more than 300 microwave relay stations on the ground. In the satellite coverage area, any two or more points can realize VSAT communication.


The capacity of satellite communication is also astonishingly large. A communication satellite can accommodate more than 60,000 people to make transoceanic calls at the same time, and can carry out many TV communications, as well as data, text, images and mobile communications.

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