This course covers advanced topics in satellite communications systems, with emphasis on digital communications. After a review of basic concepts, the following topics are addressed: the distinctions between digital and nondigital communications systems; reasons for preferring some forms of modulation and coding over others for spacecraft implementation; the relationships between spectrum management, signal propagation characteristics, orbitology, constellation design, and communications system design; the use of spread spectrum (CDMA and frequency-hopping), TDMA, and FDMA architectures; protocol design and usage; GPS; digital audio radio satellites; the use of geostationary satellites for mobile telephone systems; satellite television; and VSAT terminals.

Course prerequisite(s): 

525.616 Communication Systems Engineering is required, and 525.640 Satellite Communications Systems is recommended. Students should have knowledge of material covered in 525.201 Circuits, Devices, and Fields and 525.202 Signals and Systems.

Course instructor(s): 

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