Redundant communication path for satellite communication data

  • US 7,773,942 B2
  • Filed: 08/29/2007
  • Issued: 08/10/2010
  • Est. Priority Date: 08/29/2006
  • Status: Active Grant
First Claim
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1. A satellite communications system that provides a redundant communication path for communications data that is transmitted between a satellite and a plurality of ground stations by providing at least one backup, earth-based, utility gateway for backing up multiple earth-based operational gateways comprising:

  • a first microwave radiator configured to direct a first set of microwave signals to a first earth-based operational gateway that comprises one of said multiple earth-based operational gateways, said first set of microwave signals carrying a first subset of said communications data from a first user terminal located in spot beam coverage region;

    a first signal splitter configured to collect at least a portion of said first subset of said communications data from said first user terminal;

    a second microwave radiator configured to direct a second set of microwave signals to a second earth-based operational gateway that comprises one of said multiple earth-based operational gateways, said second set of microwave signals carrying a second subset of said communications data from a second user terminal;

    a second splitter configured to collect at least a portion of said second subset of said communications data from said second user terminal;

    a third microwave radiator configured to direct a selected one of said first set of microwave signals and said second set of microwave signals to said at least one backup, earth-based, utility gateway; and

    at least one selector on said satellite configured to selectively couple said third microwave radiator to a selected one of said first splitter and said second splitter in response to detection of propagation loss of one of said first set of microwave signals and said second set of microwave signals, such that said selected one of said first set of microwave signals and said second set of microwave signals is directed by said third microwave radiator to carry communications data collected from said selected one of the said first splitter and said second splitter to said at least one backup, earth-based, utility gateway.

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