Mobile Satellite Communications: Principles and Trends, 1st edition

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For the proponents of satellite communications systems, the decade leading to the millenium will be remembered for the extraordinary growth and excitement caused by breakthrough in mobile satellite system architecture with accompanying advances in ground and space technology. As technology of 1990s mature the stage is set to reap benefits from the experience and to further expand the frontiers of space technologies as the revolution in telecommunications, computing and broadcasting ripples across to satellite communications. In the last few years mobile satellite services (MSS) have imperceptibly entered the realm of personal communications as hundreds of thousands terminals have been introduced during the period. Thousands of terminals continue to be commissioned each month throughout the world across various MSS operators, however, the growth is healthy but lower than the aggressive forecasts of 1990s which lead to over optimistic business plans.

Due to a rapid proliferation of systems, network architecture and availability of a plethora of innovative applications, many telecommunication professionals and technical managers, have lost visibility of the mobile MSS perspective. A great amount of technical information related to MSS developments continues to flow in to journals, magazines and conferences and lie embedded in expensive and lengthy specialist reference books, etc. It is therefore difficult for individuals and companies to obtain coherent up to date technical information. This book, written to bridge the information gap, compiles prevalent system concepts, architecture and trends in a structured and easily understandable style. The book is expected to serve as a reference source as it adheres to technical concepts. Time variant information and details which may distract a reader are attached to an appendix. Mathematics is limited to essentials, and where possible, equations are illustrated graphically; a comprehensive list of reference has been included to lead the curious reader. Scientific principles have been amalgamated with business models for a balanced perspective of a commercial mobile satellite system. Subject treatment is unbiased, and views expressed are author's own; examples of commercial systems are chosen singularly on technical novelty and uniqueness.

The book, comprising of eleven chapters and an appendix presents an in-depth review of concepts, practices and trends of the entire gamut of mobile satellite system. Topics include, satellite constellations; propagation aspects peculiar to mobile communications including high frequency bands such as Ka band targeted for next generation broad band systems; applicable modulation and coding techniques with emerging trends; design issues of hand-held communicators including biological effects of radio frequency radiation; regenerative transponder technology with inter-satellite links and multi beam antenna systems; business aspects of MSS highlighting the inter-twined relationship between technical and business aspects of MSS; network optimisation; vital elements of network operations; a summary of salient features of some innovative MSS system design; services with products similar to MSS, such as navigation and direct broadcast sound systems; and future system evolution covering topics such as Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM), Internet Protocol (IP) technology, Satellite component of Universal Mobile Telecommunication Systems (S-UMTS), Ka and higher band broadband emerging systems and growing convergence of fixed and mobile satellite service for personal communications. Interesting data such as a list of recent proposals, satellite footprints, launchers, etc. are included in an appendix.

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