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Satellite communications integration with terrestrial networks

: Kapovits, Adam; Corici, Marius-Iulian; Gheorghe-Pop, Ilie-Daniel; Gavras, Anastasius; Burkhardt, Frank; Schlichter, Thomas; Covaci, Stefan


China communications 15 (2018), Nr.8, S.22-38
ISSN: 1673-5447
Fraunhofer FOKUS ()
Fraunhofer IIS ()

In this paper we evaluate the feasibility of seamless and efficient integration of terrestrial communication systems with satellite networks. This aspect is considered by standardisation bodies such as ETSI [1], 5G-PPP [2] and 3GPP [3]. A comprehensive system is designed and implemented in an emulation prototype, including standard 3GPP LTE core network functionality [4] with its different layers: networking, data forwarding, control, management and monitoring and is validated through performance measurements. This work is a technical feasibility study of extending terrestrial communication systems with satellite networks as backhaul, increasing the energy efficiency, network robustness during natural disasters as well as being an alternative for peak-time data forwarding of the terrestrial communication services. Due to its global coverage property, terrestrial-satellite integration provides an obvious extension of communication services towards isolated and remote areas and an alternative for rural or highly distributed/highly mobile enterprise networks.