21 Jan 2011 lloydwood   » (Journeyer)

Satellite constellation simulation

With this week's announcement of the COMMstellation proposal from MSCI, "Big LEO" lots-of-low-orbiting-satellite communication systems are back in the news, a decade after the 90s hype of Iridium/Globalstar/Teledesic and their competitors petered out.

COMMstellation's initial announced design looks to have more active satellites than Iridium, and data delivery ambitions to rival Teledesic. (The number of satellites tends to drop over time with redesigns to cut costs; this happened with Iridium, with Teledesic, with Skybridge...) As a polar system, it's aiming at a similar market to, but a different geographic location than, the equatorial O3b.

So, I dusted off my SaVi satellite constellation visualization software and issued a SaVi development update that lets you simulate COMMstellation. And O3b.

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