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How Satellite Technology is Impacting the Future of Communications

Satellite technology is ever-growing. Since earth’s first artificial satellite, Sputnik, was launched in 1957, satellites are now used across several industries around the globe. After all, they are an invaluable communication tool.

From weather forecasting to TV signals, internet, radio, and GPS functions, satellites are ubiquitous. Rapid advancement in technology is constantly reshaping the future of the satellite industry.

As our world becomes more technologically advanced, the future of satellite communications is getting brighter than ever. Here are a few trends impacting and reshaping the future of satellites.

A New Era of Internet Connectivity

OneWeb, a satellite internet company based in the UK, is building a low-earth orbit constellation of satellites to provide high-speed, low-latency internet to users around the world. OneWeb aims to provide the most remote locations on earth with fast, reliable internet connectivity. 

The company wants to revolutionize how people think about internet connectivity, with the goal of using satellite applications more often in maritime, offshore energy, and disaster-prone regions.

Another pioneer in the world of internet connectivity is Starlink. Elon Musk, who heads SpaceX, Tesla, and Twitter, has become a dominant player in space. His Starlink project provides high internet access anywhere around the planet using a constellation of thousands of satellites.

With over 4,500 Starlink satellites orbiting around the earth, Starlink provides high-speed internet access in war-torn zones and remote places that are hit by natural disasters. Its satellites operate approximately 300 miles above the earth in what is known as low Earth orbit. That’s more than 60 times closer than traditional satellite internet services that operate at higher altitudes. 

Since first landing in the Orbit in 2019, Starlink’s network has grown exponentially. Many governments around the world use it to communicate. Starlink’s benefit over other satellites is that it offers internet services in areas where traditional broadband providers cannot. This includes rural and remote areas and areas affected by natural disasters. Hospitals, businesses, and aid organizations frequently use its services in war zones to communicate. 

Optimizing Maritime Communication

Another benefit of satellites is their ability to provide Maritime safety and security enhancement. Satellites receive and transmit signals from vessels and allow real-time tracking of ships from distant locations.

Satellite sensors also help coordinate the movement of vessels to avoid collisions and manage maritime traffic. AST, an independent full-service communications integrator company, has developed a maritime software suite that integrates all onboard satellite communications into a single, easy-to-use interface. The tools are designed to optimize communication between vessels, crews, and onshore teams into a single platform.

The platform enhances the safety of vessels by enabling visibility and control of onboard connectivity services for crew and shore-based teams, allowing for efficient decision-making and safety. 

Reliable 5G Connectivity

LEO satellites, also known as Low Earth Orbit satellites, play an important role in extending the cellular 5G network to air, sea, and other remote areas. These satellites can extend the 5G services from cities to airplanes, cruise liners, and other vehicles in remote areas. 

5G networks offer high speeds with lower latency and more capacity, allowing for faster, more reliable connectivity at higher speeds in various applications and services. 

Faster internet speed allows businesses and tech companies to utilize various virtual and augmented reality features to provide real-time world experiences. Virtual and augmented reality features are used in industries like gaming, healthcare, entertainment, and education. The real-time images and data allow businesses to collect and analyze information to improve decision-making and enhance the development of innovative applications.

The digital transformation of satellite communication is impacting several industries, providing immense potential for growth and expansion. As satellite communications evolve, more companies will invest in them, revolutionizing global communication.

Every industry can benefit from increased internet connectivity and optimized communication. As more companies reach for the skies, satellite technology will continue to evolve and drive business growth! 

David Messiha | Staff Writer 

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