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What is space-based internet

What is space-based internet?


Technology has given some amazing things like a smartphone and computer and made it possible to do important things like take the first step on the moon, and the space-based internet is changing the way we surf the internet, conduct business and communicate with others around the world.


What is a space-based internet?

What is space-based internet
What is space-based internet?


    Space-based Internet: It is the ability to use satellites in orbit around the Earth to send and receive data, and although the Internet via satellite already exists, the space Internet is much faster and can work all over the world.


How the space-based Internet works:


    To make it work, thousands of low-cost satellites are deployed in above-earth orbit, however, they are different from the geostationary satellites, which are commonly used in satellite internet, instead, LEO satellites are used in Towers or thousands of satellites in a network-like pattern to provide continuous Internet coverage.


    For example, satellites by the space innovation company “Iridium” fly at a speed of “17,000 miles per hour” approximately to complete an orbit around the world every “100 minutes”, and for the Internet through satellites, the speed is about “7000 miles per hour”, and thus the speed of Satellite Internet is significantly higher.


    The distance-based Internet also does not know the distance, and some internal satellite networks such as “Starlink” use beacons that send coordinated signals to the Earth, and from “210 miles” to “750 miles” using the “Ka” and “Ku” frequency bands, and this allows sending Messages are twice as fast as the fibre used to deliver the Internet on Earth, regardless of the distance between here and the stars.

  • "LEO" is an acronym for "Low Earth Orbit".


Space-Based Internet Basics:

With the advent of live broadcasting satellites and inexpensive small satellites, satellite broadcasters are competing with cable TV providers. Providing high-speed Internet access to homes and businesses.


    If satellite services are going well, users will no longer have to wait to enjoy multi-gigabyte internet data connections until the phone company provides them with a fibre-optic cable, while internet data packets can be bounced off GEO satellites. TCP/IP, the protocol that ensures packets arrive securely also slows satellite-based traffic to a relative crawl.


    This is because in space TCP/IP must carry data over much longer distances than the protocols are designed for, and this causes transmission delays that make it impractical to download large files of data, including images and multimedia products that you need Several institutions, however, have researchers looking for solutions to this problem have come up with several promising proposals.

  • “TCP/IP” is an acronym for “Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol.”
  • “GEO” is an acronym for “geostationary, earth orbit.”


The difference between satellite internet and geostationary satellites:


  1. Most of the Internet systems in space use geostationary orbit satellites.
  2. The geostationary orbit is located at an altitude of "35,786 km" above the Earth's surface and directly above the equator.
  3. The satellites in this orbit move at a speed of about "11,000 km per hour", and complete one rotation of the Earth at the same time that the Earth rotates once on its axis.
  4. So to an observer on Earth, the satellite appears to be in a fixed geostationary orbit.


Advantages of space-based internet:

  • First: Coverage:

Signals from a geostationary satellite can cover roughly a third of the planet, and three to four would be enough to cover the entire Earth.


  • Second: Easier Connection:

Since the satellites appear to be stationary, it is easier to connect to them.


Disadvantages of Space-Based Internet:

    Latency problems, where the transmission latency from a satellite in a geostationary orbit is about “600 milliseconds”, and geostationary satellites are located at higher altitudes compared to low Earth orbit, and therefore the longer the distance that must be covered results in Greater latency, and latency is the time interval between the user looking for data and the server sending that data.


Benefits of satellite internet via satellite internet:


  • First: Global high-speed Internet:

A fully functional satellite internet system covers the entire world with high-speed internet, including those without modern internet access.


  • Second: It takes the place of fibre:

Satellite Internet replaces the fibres used in a modern Internet connection, the same fibres that are expensive for Internet providers.


  • Third: consistent signals:

From dropped calls and lost signals, those inconveniences are gone with satellite internet.


  • Fourth: future evidence:

The satellite Internet gives the necessary connectivity to operate and use the innovative devices of the future without fail.


  • Fifth: Better performance:  

Thanks to the use of LEO satellites, poor performance due to high latency must be reduced.


Challenges Facing Space-Based Internet:

  • First, the response time:

    Response time: It is the time it takes for a request to travel between the sender and receiver and for the recipient of the information to process it, for example, a high response time will cause a video delay while watching it from your computer.


    The fibre-optic Internet is characterized by a latency that does not exceed a few microseconds per kilometre, and in contrast,,, when it is sent to a geostationary satellite, such as the satellites most used for the Internet through the current satellites, the access time is “700 microseconds”, and although the satellites The satellite internet users will be closer to Earth, the latency and the extent of its impact on communications is unknown at this time.


  • Second: Space waste:


    There are approximate “4,000 spacecraft” orbiting the Earth, and only 1,800 of them operate, and as space Internet companies begin deploying thousands of satellites in space, the amount of “space junk” will multiply rapidly, and this deployment may cause satellites to collide. An industrial catastrophe, according to NASA.


  • Third: Technical Challenges:


  1. Just like any other technical advancement,,, there are technical challenges such as how to keep satellites in their proper place in space, and who companies can build thousands of these satellites at once.
  2. Despite the challenges, the satellite internet is moving in full force with new improvements happening rapidly and the future of internet connectivity is limitless.

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