Satellite Communications Training | Crash Course

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Satellite Communications Training, Bootcamp Course

Satellite Communications Training Bootcamp Course is a 4-day interactive training bootcamp.  Satellites have now played a vital role in our lives for nearly 60 years.

The applications of satellite communications have grown with technological advances. Common applications today include:

  • Communication
  • Remote sensing applications
  • Military applications and navigations
  • Weather condition monitoring and forecasting
  • Radio broadcasting and voice communications
  • TV broadcasting

After the world has seen 8,378 satellites launched, there’s a tendency to take them and the services they provide for granted.

You shouldn’t.

Truly understanding satellite communications involves exposure to technical details.

One of those details is a concept known as gain to noise temperature ratio (G/T). This is a crucial figure of merit in the characterization of antenna performance, where G is the antenna gain in decibels at the receive frequency, and T is the equivalent noise temperature of the receiving system in kelvins.

The receiving system noise temperature is the summation of the antenna noise temperature and the RF chain noise temperature from the antenna terminals to the receiver output.

Antenna temperature (Tant) is a parameter that describes how much noise an antenna produces in a given environment. Antenna noise temperature is not the physical temperature of the antenna but rather an expression of the available noise power at the antenna flange.

Another important term to understand is link budget.  A link budget is an accounting of all of the power gains and losses that a communication signal experiences in a telecommunication system.

It accounts for the attenuation of the transmitted signal due to propagation, as well as the antenna gains and feedline and other losses, as well as the amplification of the signal in the receiver or any repeaters it passes through. A link budget is a design aid, calculated during the design of a communication system to determine the received power, to ensure that the information is received intelligibly with an adequate signal-to-noise ratio.

Orbital mechanics is another key area of understanding. Orbital mechanics is the study of the motion of satellites that are present in orbits. Orbital elements are the parameters, which are helpful for describing the orbital motion of satellites. The main orbital elements that define the orbit of earth satellites are:

  • Semi major axis
  • Eccentricity
  • Mean anomaly
  • Argument of perigee
  • Inclination
  • Right ascension of ascending node

External forces also influence a communication satellite’s behavior. A satellite, when it revolves around the earth, it undergoes a pulling force from the earth due to earth’s gravitational force. This force is known as Centripetal force (F1) because this force brings the satellite toward it.

Satellite Communications Training Course by Tonex

Satellite Communications Training crash course focuses on satellite communications  payloads, systems engineering and architecture of satellite systems including application requirements such as digital video and broadband media, mobile services, IP networking and UDP/TCP/IP services, concept of operations, identifying end-to-end.satellite payload requirements and constellation.

This popular and intensive Satellite Communications Training crash course provides attendees with an in-depth knowledge of satellite communication principals and techniques and key emerging technologies.

The course is ideal for engineers and managers involved in Satellite Communications planning, architecture, design, implementation and operation.

Upon completion of this course, attendees will:

  • Learn the basic introduction to RF characteristics and modelling tools used to calculate spurious signals, inter-modulation levels, phase noise, Bit Error Rate and RF interference
  • Gain familiarity with merits such as Gain to Noise Temperature Ratio (G/T) and
    provide an in-depth knowledge of satellite communication systems planning, design, operation and maintenance
  • Gain familiarity with propagation, link budget, RF planning, system tradeoffs multiple access, modulation and coding schemes
  • Gain familiarity with system architecture of satellite communications payloads
  • Learn the basic aspects of satellite performance
  • Gain familiarity with repeater design and different repeater components
  • Gain familiarity with key communications parameters
  • Basic introduction of speech and video coding, satellite networking, TCP/IP and other trends
  • Learn the basic satellite communication cybersecurity and mitigation
  • Gain familiarity with  Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) and Wideband Code Division Multiple Access (WCDMA) principles

Course Topics

Introduction to Satellite Communications (SATCOM)

  • Different types of satellite orbits and payloads
  • Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO) system
  • Low Earth Orbit (LEO) system
  • Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) system
  • Highly Elliptical Orbit (HEO) system
  • Major categories of satellite services defined by ITU
  • Broadcasting Satellite Service
  • Mobile Satellite Service
  • Fixed Satellite Service
  • Satellite communications systems engineering principals
  • Digital Direct-to-Home (DTH) TV
  • VSAT services
  • 2-way interactive services
  • Mobile communications technologies
  • Service and performance requirements

Planning and Design (Earth & Planetary)

  • Satellite constellations
  • Satellite orbits
  • Orbital mechanics basics
  • Satellite coverage
  • Space environment orbit and attitude determination and analysis
  • Propulsion system
  • Spacecraft operations and automation
  • Spacecraft navigation
  • Coverage and communication analysis

Satellite Communications Principles

  • Terrestrial Systems
  • Satellite communication systems
  • Satellite communication system architecture
  • Satellite access
  • Radio link reliability
  • Doppler effect
  • Satellite constellations
  • Spot beams
  • Radio Link
  • Spectrum issues
  • Spectrum sharing methods
  • Propagation characteristics
  • General propagation characteristics
  • Analog and digital Modulation
  • Digital modulation and Coding
  • Satellite RF Link
  • Multiple access principles
  • Earth Stations
  • Antennas
  • Satellite system performance
  • Link budget analysis
  • System tradeoffs

System Specification and Requirement Writing

  • Spacecraft subsystems areas
  • Communications payload, Altitude Control, Propulsion, Electrical Power and Distribution, Payload, Thermal, Telemetry, Tracking and Command, and Orbit Control
  • Satellite Radio building blocks
  • Satellite ground segment
  • Earth stations subsystem
  • Various types of satellite payloads
  • Satellite transponders
  • Bent-pipe Satellites
  • Key technology advancements in Satellite Communications (SATCOM) payloads for telecommunications services
  • Different types of orbits for satellites
  • International regulations (ITU-T) governing the frequency planning and coordination of the diverse satellite networks

Requirement analysis  of the Satellite Payload

  • Capabilities of different repeater components
  • Assessment techniques for performance of all major building blocks including repeaters, antenna system, and tracking
  • Critical subsystem and system design concepts such as power budget, loss, group delay, IM (Intermodulation) distortion, digital impairments, cross-polarization, adjacent satellite and channel interference
  • Design principles and performance budgets for system elements such as receivers, phased-array antennas, multiplexers, amplifiers, analog and digital processors, reflector, feeds and other passive and active components
  • System verification of payload and ground segment performance
  • Evaluation of subsystem / system performance, and guidelines for overseeing development

Key Payload Communications Parameters

  • Gain and phase variation with frequency
  • Phase Noise
  • Frequency Stability
  • Spurious signals from frequency converter
  • Self-interference products
  • Passive Intermodulation products
  • Noise figure and payload performance budgets
  • Engineering specifications and techniques for payload compatibility with the satellite bus
  • Communications satellite’s transponder
  • Communications channel between the receiving and the transmitting antennas

Transponder System Design and Architecture

  • System tradeoffs
  • RF tradeoffs (RF power, EIRP, G/T)
  • Input band limiting device (a band pass filter)
  • Input low-noise amplifier (LNA)
  • Frequency translator
  • Oscillator and a frequency mixer
  • Output band pass filter
  • Power amplifier
  • Traveling-wave tube
  • Solid state amplifiers
  • Design elements and specifications for the satellite communications payload
  • “Bent pipe” principle
  • Bent-pipe repeater subsystem
  • Regenerated mode
  • Regenerated and bent-pipe mode
  • Bent-pipe topology
  • On-board processing
  • Demodulated, decoded, re-encoded and modulated signals

Communications Payload Performance Management

  • Performance and capacity planning
  • Payload system Tradeoffs
  • Bent-pipe repeater analysis and design
  • Antenna Design and Performance
  • Link budget
  • On-board Digital processor
  • A/D and D/A conversion
  • DSP (digital signal processing)
  • Multiple access technologies
  • Principles behind FDMA, TDMA, CDMA
  • Demodulation and remodulation
  • Multiplexing
  • Multi-beam Antennas
  • RF Interference
  • Spectrum Management

SATCOM Networks and System Cybersecurity

  • SATCOM Systems Attacks
  • SATCOM System Vulnerabilities
  • Exploiting SATCOM Systems and Devices
  • Hacking/exploitation techniques, tools and entry points
  • Cybersecurity Attacks and Best Mitigation Practices for SATCOM Systems

Overview of Mobile User Objective System (MUOS)

  • MUOS orbiting satellites
  • MUSO system survey
  • MUOS satellites payload
  • Lockheed’s A2100 satellite bus
  • MUOS radio terminal users and space segment payload
  • UHF data uplink (300-320 MHz)
  • Conversion to Ka-Band for downlink to ground stations
  • Uplink Ka-Band as part of a ground station feeder link
  • Conversion to UHF (360-380MHz) by the satellite for reception by mobile users
  • MUOS spot beams
  • Data rates of up to 384kbps  for mobile users
  • Voice, data and combined voice/data communications
  • Principles of 3G broadband wireless and WCDMA
  • Wideband Code Division Multiple Access (WCDMA) payload
  • Legacy UHF payload
  • Principles of ultra high frequency (UHF) band and next generation of narrowband communications
  • Secure ultra-high frequency (UHF) satellite communications (SATCOM) for mobile force

Overview of Military Satellites

  • Military Satellite Common Missions
  • ISR, intelligence gathering, navigation and military communications
  • Photographic reconnaissance missions
  • Overview of narrowband and broadband military communications satellite systems

Satellite Communications Training