Future of Satellite Communication

September 9, 2014 | By More

Soon there will be mining expeditions on Mars and the Periodic Table may expand to add newly discovered elements. Human presence on the Red Planet may not be ruled out yet but initially remotely controlled robots will perform the tasks. Billions of dollars investments from Multinational mining, power and fuel companies will make this venture possible soon enough. But like on earth these expeditions will be connected through daily improving Satellite Communication Technology.

Future_Of_Satellite_Picture

In almost half a century Satellite and Satellite Communication industry has witnessed amazing growth, improvement and innovation. Now we are dealing with High Throughput Satellites (HTS) and efficient ground equipment including antennas, ODU’s and advanced modems. Credit goes to sense of competition and everyday increase in demand of bandwidth requirement at lower costs. Every new satellite launch, new modem release or even firmware release for that sake has something new to offer, which their competitor lacks. But like Cellular communication where even the competitors share infrastructure like BTS sites and towers, will the players of satellite communication industry go an extra mile to adopt such relationships getting added coverage and added value to their customers. I know and have witnessed some agreements between satellite operators, but that doesn’t seem enough.

Let’s assume that the joint ventures I talked about in previous paragraph are not limited to teleport, transponder or bandwidth sharing but goes way beyond. Yes I am talking about more functional satellites which transport data traffic to adjacent satellite, making a circular pipe (ring) of almost 294,925 km of wireless communication. This will eliminate the delays faced by double or even multiple hops from earth stations to communicate between two or multiple points on globe not covered by a single satellite. This will also eliminate involvement hybrid networks including fibre. Similarly this scenario can be modelled for earth station equipment specially satellite modems. Again quoting rapid advancement of Cellular Communication, where a cellular operator deploys network multiple vendors at both BSS & NSS, still network operates efficiently.

Moving back to advancement in technology we can be expecting Polar satellites, serving the areas where Geosynchronous satellites have very low look angle and not very good footprints. Even new satellites may have increased capacity to perform observation and monitoring tasks not relying on any active communication just to record any disaster like that of MH370 based only on passive communication. Satellite Communication industry has lot more to offer and trends of growth and innovation will keep improving every year. So all those people working in the industry don’t worry about the growth of microwave & fibre network, they can’t go Extra Terrestrial.

Ring Computing

Is it the perfect time for Satellite industry to embrace advancement of nanotechnology and move up the ladder? I mentioned above the communication between adjacent satellites to create a pipe of 294,925 km. Imagine what this pipe or ring (as being used for the rings around Saturn, but here it won’t be visible) would capable to do, if satellites were not only used as a Physical Layer bridges. I am talking about On-Board processing, routing, switching and data storage.

This concept of ‘Ring Computing’ (‘Cloud Computing’ was already taken and it doesn’t resemble a cloud in any possible way) will change commercial usage of Satellite Communication for end users, corporate, military and government sector. I am talking about an outer space Wi-Fi mesh, BSS network or even IN, NSS & Core Network and backup data storage. Obviously this concept will require lot of research work and great deal of effort to influence multiple industries to participate and a huge amount of CAPEX. But once initiated it will have very low and stable OPEX as compared to hybrid networks with multiple stakeholders involved.

The deployment of ‘Ring Computing’ Network will not only provide user endless possibility of remaining online anywhere, any time but will also be there to keep the people connected in case of a natural disaster without deploying any ad-hoc network infrastructure. This concept will open the doors of endless opportunities to introduce new possibilities of communication to end users which previously were limited to GPS and Satellite Phones. This concept will serve the un-served and under served areas without requiring installation of expensive communication infrastructure. Cellular operators operating in different countries will truly become global. Broadcasting and DTH TV Channel bundles will be available to anyone anywhere with valid subscription.

Other than mentioned benefits Satellite Operators name will become household names! A step of Satellite Communication industry will become a leap of Telecommunication industry.

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Category: COLUMNS

Muhammad Furqan

About the Author ()

Muhammad Furqan has been working in Satellite Communication industry for more than 6 years in large scale multinational & government organizations in complex multi-vendor networks for different customers. Major focus of his expertise was 'Cellular Backhauling'. He also looked over multiple projects for multiple clients including Cellular Operators, Broadcasters, ISP's & banks. He designed & implemented multiple customized solutions for different customers with bandwidth optimization for reduced costs. He also managed 24x7 operations teams, customer accounts & served as point of contact for Satellite Operators & vendors. He has traveled to different parts of the world making useful contacts in the industry. Recently relocated to Australia and looking for new challenges.

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