22 April 1996 Global satellite communication network using double-layered inclined-orbit constellation with optical intersatellite links
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Abstract
A double-layered constellation for a future global satellite communications network connected by optical intersatellite links has been proposed. The constellation consists of lower layer satellites for mobile and personal satellite communications, and upper layer satellites for large- capacity fixed satellite communications and feeder links. Optical inter-satellite links, which can perform high-capacity communications with small terminals, are used for all intersatellite data transmission. Although a polar orbit constellation offers the merit of simpleness in network configurations, the inclined orbit constellation offers the potential for reducing the required number of satellites, improving link properties, and enhancing the coverage in middle and low latitudes, by selecting the most adequate inclination of the orbits. The optical inter- satellite link properties, coverage properties, and required number of satellites are evaluated for constellations using inclined orbits, and then compared with those of a polar orbit constellation. Three constellation types in each layer achieving continuous double coverage are assumed. For each constellation, the relations between these properties and the inclination of the orbits are examined. The basic parameters of optical inter-satellite links on satellite constellations using inclined orbits are also shown.
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Kazuhiro Kimura, Keizo Inagaki, Yoshio Karasawa, "Global satellite communication network using double-layered inclined-orbit constellation with optical intersatellite links", Proc. SPIE 2699, Free-Space Laser Communication Technologies VIII, (22 April 1996); doi: 10.1117/12.238421; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.238421
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