The Hylas-1 project foresees the deployment of an end to end communications system comprising five main “segments”:
Space Segment - Astrium is constructing the Hylas-1 satellite including the advanced Ku and Ka-band payloads. The Ka-band payload provides coverage of selected parts of Europe where the greatest commercial opportunities exist for broadband service provision via satellite.
The coverage is implemented by means eight spot beams providing high gain and thereby high EIRP and G/T for compatibility with small and inexpensive transmit/receive end-user terminals. New repeater technology has been exploited to provide extensive service flexibility and re-configurability in-orbit. Specifically:
- Generic, Flexible Payload (GFP) equipment provides the means to flexibly allocate spectrum (bandwidth) to beams in orbit.
- “Flexible” TWTAs (offering an in-orbit adjustable saturated output power at near-constant efficiency) provide the means to flexibly allocate power to beams in orbit.
Control Segment - responsible for operation of the Hylas-1 spacecraft, principally the routine and emergency operation of the satellite platform and configuration and monitoring of the communications payload.
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Service Segment - A comprehensive Ka-band Gateway is being developed for Hylas-1 which provides all the necessary baseline facilities required to deliver broadband internet and other applications. Issues particular to Ka-band, such as rain fade, are being addressed through the deployment of spatially diverse antenna facilities.
Applications Segment - whilst broadband services for domestic and business customers form the core application for Hylas-1, the system has been designed to ensure the easy inclusion of other communications applications such as HDTV broadcasting and data contribution and distribution services.
Support Segment - this includes the provision of launch, insurance and regulatory services