With plenty of capacity and new technology, Ka-band satellites have become the band of choice for many satellite operators in order to answer the increasing demand for internet-based and data-driven applications.
Ka-band technology not only opens up the market to a whole new range of frequencies, more cost-effective than other bands, but it also encompasses new technology, new transmission and higher bandwidth that provides higher quality, better performance and higher speed services. Avanti has been the European pioneer on the development of Ka-band technology and has a fleet of 4 Ka-band satellites covering Europe, The Middle East and Africa.
WHAT MAKES KA-BAND UNIQUE?
- Focused power
Ka-band beams are much more focused, resulting in high powered spot beams lit over specific regions. Much higher throughput can be achieved using the same amount of bandwidth, driving down the cost of the spectrum. Ka-band spot beams have a higher EIRP (Effective Isotropic Radiated Power) at beam centre compared with traditional Ku-band spot beams, allowing for higher data throughput. Ka satellites often have 10 times more capacity than Ku satellites.
- Frequency reuse
The smaller more focused Ka-band beams allow frequency reuse. When a desired service area is covered by multiple spot beams, several beams can reuse the same frequency band, boosting the capacity of the satellite system.
Traditionally, C-band and Ku-band frequencies have been adopted for satellite communications and with so many corporations owning licenses to transmit on these frequencies, this part of the spectrum has become considerably saturated. As a result remaining capacity has increased significantly in cost. Ka-band frequency opens up the market to a new whole range of frequencies, which can be exploited for satellite broadband services.
- Antenna size
The reflector gain of a signal is proportional to the square of the signal’s frequency. As a result, only small antenna dishes, usually 74cm, are required to receive and transmit at Ka-band frequencies because the Ka-band frequency range is higher than traditional C-band and Ku-band. Smaller dishes are not only much cheaper but also more mobile which suits applications such as cell on wheels for emergency deployments, temporary sites coverage such as large events, network extension and machine to machine.
- Lower cost – due to the efficiencies resulting from the use of small spot beams which concentrate power and re-use spectrum
- Higher capacity – Ka satellites often have 10 times more capacity than Ku satellites, providing room for a customer to grow their network
- Smaller dishes – efficiencies of operating at Ka-band mean that user terminals are cheaper and cost less to install and maintain
- Service resilience – Avanti’s Ka-band satellites have comparable rain resilience to Ku satellites
- Uncongested – Ka-band is free of interference compared to Ku-band