Satcom is constantly evolving with new technologies, including very small aperture terminal (VSAT) systems and mobile satcom communication systems in medium and low orbit, gaining widespread attention and application.
Satcom cis also an important part of the future global information highway. It has the advantages of wide coverage, large communication capacity, long distance communication, no geographical restrictions, high quality, and high economic benefits. It was first applied in China in 1972 and rapidly developed. Along with fiber optic communication and digital microwave communication, it has become the backbone of modern long-distance communication in China.
Satcom communication is not restricted by geographical conditions and has flexible mobility, so it still innovates and develops with its advantages. However, it also faces challenges from rapidly developing fiber optic communication, which has greater capacity and transmission speeds, and many overseas communications are being replaced by undersea cables. The same is true for landlines.
In the mid-to-late 1990s, satellite TV broadcasts (DBS-Direct Broadcast Satellite or DTH-Direct To Home), satellite audio broadcasting, satellite mobile communication, and satellite broadband multimedia communication became the new four major trends in development.
The International Satellite Communication Organization's Intelsat series has evolved to the ninth generation. From 1996 to 2004, business volume has remained basically stable, with total global revenue reaching 9.4 billion US dollars in 2004. The US expects to have one million users in 2006, with a VSAT application growth rate of approximately 15% to 20% each year. Broadband access and multimedia businesses are gradually developing, and the Ka band will become the mainstream of broadband services. Canadian telecommunications satellite company (Telesat), American Wild Blue company, and Thailand's Shin Satellite Company are leading in the broadband business.
In terms of satellite performance, it is possible to increase transmission power, improve EIRP value, increase the number of satellite transponders, increase bandwidth, reduce costs, and reduce the size and cost of ground terminal equipment.
The Anik F2 satellite launched by Canada on July 18, 2004, has a total of 114 transponders, 50 of which are in the Ka band. The Ipstar satellite launched by Thailand on August 11, 2005, has 114 transponders with a communication capacity of 45 Gbit/s. It is currently the world's largest commercial communication satellite. Europe is developing larger satellites and plans to install 250 transponders, with a scheduled launch date of 2008.
The satellite uses a digital signal processor to improve signal exchange capability, reduce ground equipment, establish earth stations with telemetry, telecommand, tracking and monitoring functions, as well as network management functions to achieve dynamic control and management of the satellite. Satellite broadband communication can broadcast high-definition TV, connect to the Internet to develop network television, and more.