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Satellite Broadband Services

  • IASbaba
  • February 16, 2022
  • 0
UPSC Articles
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Satellite Broadband Services

Part of: Prelims and GS-III Information technology; Science and technology

Context: Digital services company Jio Platforms has formed a joint-venture with Luxembourg-based satellite-linked content connectivity solutions provider SES to deliver satellite broadband services across India.

Key takeaways 

  • The joint venture will use multi-orbit space networks that is a combination of GEO (geostationary equatorial orbit) and MEO (medium earth orbit) satellite constellations 
  • The joint venture will be the vehicle for providing SES’s satellite data and connectivity services in India, except for certain international aeronautical and maritime customers who may be served by SES.
  • It will have availability of up to 100 Gbps capacity from SES.

How is Jio’s proposed satellite broadband service different from Starlink or OneWeb services?

  • SES primarily has satellites in the GEO and the MEO, while those of Elon Musk-led Starlink and Bharti Group’s OneWeb are in low earth orbit (LEO).
  • The altitude of the satellite is directly proportional to the area of earth that it covers. 
  • Therefore, the higher a satellite is positioned, the larger an area it covers.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of GEO, MEO and LEO?

  • GEO and LEO satellites are considered to be the two extremes in satellite communications. 
  • While GEO satellites provide a larger coverage and therefore only three satellites can cover the whole earth, hundreds of LEO satellites are needed to provide coverage to a larger area. 
  • LEO satellites are smaller and are cheaper to launch than GEOs or MEOs.
  • For MEO satellites, while a simple equatorial orbit covers 96% of the global population, it shares some disadvantages of GEO satellites such as the need for a high inclined antenna for locations away from the equator.

News source: IE

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