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Explanation of internet access and private VSAT networks (expansion of the two tiny images at the CorpSkies details)

Internet access

Diagram showing public satellite internet access from multiple remote VSAT terminals
Diagram showing satellite internet access.

In this configuration many customer VSAT sites, often independent of one another are provided with access to the world internet backbone system, enabling access to web sites, email and other services worldwide.

There is a large satellite dish at a Teleport where the interconnection to the terrestrial internet backbone occurs.  At the teleport is router equipment and processing equipment to manage all the remote VSAT terminals.

The network typically has a high bit rate (2 to 40 Mbit/s) outlink carrier from a large teleport hub dish, used to distribute download data to all sites.  The total bit rate is shared amongst all sites.

The uplinks, or return link transmissions, from each remote VSAT go to the hub teleport.  These messages are mainly mouse click and sent emails.

The customer terminals are typically called "satellite internet" dishes.

Remote sites at small, 89cm - 1.2m diameter.  The larger sizes are need at the edge of the coverage beam areas.  The teleport hub is typically a large 10m diameter dish.

Private VSAT networking

Diagram showing a private VSAT network, linking the company HQ with several remote offices
Private company VSAT network between Headquarters and remote local offices

Business with a headquarters and remote offices may use VSAT technology to provide both star and / or mesh networking between their own private sites.

Voice telephone calls using VoIP and remote access from the offices to a central computer at the headquarters are typical applications.

Applications include: Banks, Cash machines, Government Offices, Customs, Airlines, Police, Petrol stations, Supermarkets, Credit Card authorisation, oil and pipeline monitoring, seismograph networks etc.  Note that at each remote site there may be multiple PCs or terminal devices (tills, ATM, data entry, data loggers etc)

Both the hub and the remote office sites are typically called "Private VSAT terminals".  All VSATs are of similar size, perhaps 1.8 to 2.4m diameter.

Because the total number of dishes is small it makes sense to consider buying even larger dishes (3.7 to 4.5m) so that advanced modulation methods may be used in order to significantly reduce monthly charges by using the satellite more efficiently.

The images on this page have been kindly provided by CorpSkies - a Saudi business service provider for the Middle East and North Africa, contact sales@corpskies.com

Updated 7 April 2021.