H.265 Encoding for Satellite Services – Blog – by Kerim Sare Regional Manager, Soliton Systems
Soliton and Satellite services
There are few terminologies for satellite services used by broadcasters such as BGAN, VSAT, Ka-Sat, BGAN HDR,Tooway etc. which are quite confusing for everyone. Before we analyze our mobile encoders’ performance on satellite networks, I’d like to share some information about satellite frequencies and services.
There are 4 satellite frequency bands available.
BGAN, the famous satellite communication service by Inmarsat, uses L-band. There are many BGAN terminals uses the bandwidth from Inmarsat satellites. Since there is not much bandwidth available in L-band, it is a costly commodity.
It uses large (2.4- 3.7 meter) antennas. These are the large white domes that you see on top of the cruise ships and commercial vessels. These antennas are providing connections to the Internet, the public telephone networks, and data back-hauls to their head office.
Ku-Band is most commonly used for satellite TV and is used for most VSAT systems. There is much more bandwidth available in Ku -Band and it is, therefore, less expensive thanC or L-band.
Ku band coverage is generally by regional spot beams, covering major land areas with TV reception.
Ka-Band bandwidth is plentiful and once implemented should be quite inexpensive compared to Ku-Band. It is used today for terrestrial VSAT services. Ka-Band is providing high data speeds, thus, enabling high-qualityvideo transmission over satellite internet. Inmarsat’s Ka-Band service with its global coverage and Eutelsat’s Tooway Ka-Band service with its affordable prices are two common Ka-Band services as of 2018.
BGAN and VSAT:There are two popular options for IP communications over satellite: Inmarsat’s BGAN (Broadband Global Area Network) and VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal) technology, which operates on a variety of satellite carriers including Intelsat, Telesat, andSES amongst others. Both technologies provide reliable communications for voice and data applications in remote locations.
The BGAN service offers a Standard/Shared service IP connection with peak speeds of 490 Kbps and a Streaming/Dedicated IP service with selectable speeds from 32 to 384 Kbps. VSAT bandwidth is selectable from 64K to multiple Megabits per second in symmetrical or asymmetrical configurations. If you need high bandwidth, then VSAT is the likely path for you.
Although VSAT term became very popular amongst broadcasters mainly for Ku-Band as it was the service providing the bestdata rates before Ka-Band, some people say Ka-Sat by meaning VSAT for Ka-Band. It is good to clear out this confusion about it.
Smart-Telecaster ZAO and Smart-Telecaster ZAO-S – Video Encoding for Satellite Services
Our Smart-Telecaster ZAO and Smart-Telecaster ZAO-S mobile live broadcasting encoders are using the latest H.265/HEVC code and RASCOW technology to maximize the live streaming performance even at very low data transmission speeds. The common usage of our broadcasting encoders is to combine multiple 3G/4G/LTE modems as our encoders can bond and load balance every modem according to data transmission speeds. Bonding is the technology of combining each modem’s data speed, Load balancing is to spread the data load among all the modems according to each modem’s momentary data speed. Our units use both for maximizing the quality of the live streaming.
Our hardware-basedmobile encoders with their small sizes are optimized for satellite internet usage. As an example in terms of bandwidth; a traditional encoder with H.264 technology would need around 4Mbps upload speed to stream a video in Full-HD quality, whereas our H.265 mobile encoders need around 2Mbps upload speed to stream a video in Full-HD quality.
Satellite Service Tests for Smart-Telecaster ZAO and Smart-Telecaster ZAO-S
We tested BGAN service with our units, the bandwidth BGAN has for video and audio are quite limited so we had to optimize our streaming technology according to BGAN limitations. After a fewadjustments, we had successful test results and some of our users are happily using our units with BGAN. Rumor has it, we heard from some of the users that our units perform the best with BGAN.
Many of our users also use our units with Eutelsat’s Tooway service, which is providing affordable Ka-band satellite network with high bandwidth. Beams for Eutelsat Ka-Band satellite is currently available in Europe and the MiddleEast. Many other satellite operators announce their Ka Band service to be enabled in 2019 or in 2020 as well.
We also tested Jetwave hardware which enables using Inmarsat’s Global Xpress Ka-Band service with our units on an airplane. The results were successful and you can check out the video from this test:
Please kindly get in touch with us for further information on live broadcasting to learn more about our products and compatible technologies.Go to public safety Live broadcasting solutions