DELIVER



Delivery via KA-Sat

In May 2011, Eutelsat launched a broadband satellite Internet service called Tooway.

Introduction

In May 2011, Eutelsat launched a broadband satellite Internet service called Tooway. It utilises a high-power satellite - KA-SAT 9A. This provides a fast, low-cost method of delivering video and audio data over satellite broadband connections.

Satellite Internet services using KA-band provide flexible booking and billing options with billing available at flat, volume, and event rates.

Using a satellite dish with a diameter of about 77 cm, KA-Sat can deliver up to 10 Mbit /s uplink and up to 50 Mbit/s download.

The Technology

There are a number of certified antennas available on the market, which differs in size, and design. Depending on the installation required, roof mounted antennas can be used to provide a better line of sight, although portable, flight cased (flyaway kits) variants are also available. These flyaway kits are suitable for transportation on aircraft and comply with current IATA regulations.

Motorised, automatically locking satellite dishes provide a fast, hassle-free way to connect, although they do weigh substantially more than simple self-build kits. To counteract weather-related signal loss, a dish with a diameter of at least 89 cm should be combined with a BUC transmission power of 4W for professional use. Satellite modems, such as the SurfBeam 2 Pro, will receive and transmit the data signal from the location.

Eutelsat’s NewsSpotter

Real-time streaming applications for radio, television and Internet really benefit from guaranteed fixed bandwidth connections. The NewsSpotter service offered by Eutelsat allows web-based bookings of connectivity when needed, ensuring that News crews have the flexibility of connectivity as it’s needed.

KA-Sat vs. KU satellite

Due to the lower transmission power and the shorter wavelength range, KA-band can be more susceptible to interference (e.g. due to poor weather conditions), when compared to KU-band satellite services, which are commonly used in European Satellite Newsgathering Vehicles (SNG) for baseband transmissions.

Resilient transmission technologies, greater transmission bandwidth and point to multipoint transmissions are currently only possible with KU-band SNG technology, although the new KA-band devices and services are evolving rapidly.

It’s important to balance the cost savings and potential size efficiencies of KA-band tools, against the resilience that you may require. Any service choice should be based on the risk profile of the production, particularly when working with live, non-news, services.

Conclusion

Eutelsat has supplemented its portfolio of IP based transmission facilities with its KA-Sat offer.

Easily compressed audio and video signals transmitted via IP satellite is now very affordable for many productions. New Encoder generations with more efficient video compression techniques, such as H.265, will be in high demand in the future. These developments will enable the transmission of higher quality images at a constant bandwidth or the same quality at a reduced bandwidth.

However for applications that require two-way communications, the long packet delays on the data transport can be a limiting factor. This can be mitigated with routing audio over mobile phones, however is not a very resilient solution.

File transfer optimisers such as Aspera or Signiant can be combined with KA-band satellite services to enable the delivery of large files more securely and robustly.