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Satellite Applications

Broadband Digital Communications Broadband satellites transmit high-speed data and video directly to consumers and businesses. Markets for broadband services also include interactive TV, wholesale telecommunications, telephony, and point-of-sale communications, such as credit card transactions and inventory control. Direct-Broadcast Services Direct-broadcast satellites (DBS) transmit signals for direct reception by the general public, such as satellite television and radio. Satellite signals are sent directly to users through their own receiving antennas or satellite dishes, in contrast to satellite/cable systems in which signals are received by a ground station, and re-broadcast to users by cable. Environmental Monitoring Environmental monitoring satellites carry highly sensitive imagers and sounders to monitor the Earth's environment, including the vertical thermal structure of the atmosphere; the movement and formation of clouds; ocean temperatures; snow levels; glacial movement; and volcanic activity. Large-scale computers use this data to model the entire earth's atmosphere and create weather forecasts such as those provided by national weather services in the U.S. and abroad. These satellites are typically self-contained systems that carry their own communications systems for distributing the data they gather in the form reports and other products for analyzing the condition of the environment. Satellites are particularly useful in this case because they can provide continuous coverage of very large geographic regions. Fixed-Satellite Services Satellites providing Fixed-Satellite Services (FSS) transmit radio communications between ground Earth stations at fixed locations. Satellite-transmitted information is carried in the form of radiofrequency signals. Any number of satellites may be used to link these stations. Earth stations that are part of fixed-satellite services networks also use satellite news gathering vehicles to broadcast from media events, such as sporting events or news conferences. In addition, FSS satellites provide a wide variety of services including paging networks and point-of-sale support, such as credit card transactions and inventory control. Mobile Satellite Services Mobile Satellite Services (MSS) use a constellation of satellites that provide communications services to mobile and portable wireless devices, such as cellular phones and global positioning systems. The satellite constellation is interconnected with land-based cellular networks or ancillary terrestrial components that allow for interactive mobile-to-mobile and mobile-to-fixed voice, data, and multimedia communications worldwide. With repeaters located on orbit, the interference of traditional fixed-ground terminals can be eliminated

Weather forecast use a variety of observations from which to analyses the current state of the atmosphere. Since the launch of the first weather satellite in 1960 global observations have been possible, even in the remotest areas. Observation as obtained from satellite used in Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) model. During the 1970s and 1980s a wide range of satellite missions have been launched from which many different meteorological observations could be estimated. Some satellite instruments allowed improved estimation of moisture, cloud and rainfall. Others allowed estimation of wind velocity by tracking features (e.g. clouds) visible in the imagery or surface wind vectors from microwave backscatter.