Advances in satellite communications technology in recent years have led to a significant increase in throughput delivered from a raft of new ‘High Throughput Satellite’ (HTS) systems. More than a dozen such satellites have been launched in recent years and several more will go into orbit in the coming years. These satellites support diverse user requirements and use cases – from ‘connecting the unconnected’ to providing secure and resilient communications to industries, SMEs and all end users.
In this extended commercial and technical white paper we explore in particular the performance tradeoffs, and note the growing importance of higher frequency systems, given the significant spectrum allocations and high performance in key deployment areas. HTS systems offer a step change in bandwidth delivery to support a host of diverse customer requirements. The raft of systems launched must balance tradeoffs that affect system performance, user experience and cost of service, which are extensively modelled and reviewed. This report highlights that the choices available in terms of geographic footprint, performance and cost are many, so it is increasingly important for users to carefully consider their actual use case requirements.
We would also like to thank Prof. Michel Bousquet, of Institut Supérieur de l'Aéronautique et de l'Espace, Toulouse, and Avanti Communications for their collaboration and support in the development of this paper.
In addition to this detailed whitepaper, an executive summary version is available.