Satellite communications facilitated by synchronized nodal regressions of low earth orbits

A satellite communication method enables a low earth orbit data collecting mission satellite to conveniently achieve continuous, real time, and cost effective global connectivity by “plugging in” to a constellation of low earth orbit communication satellites designed to provide mobile satellite service for terrestrial users. Orbit parameters for the mission satellite are selected to generate a nodal regression rate matched to that of the communication satellites so that initial alignment of orbit planes is sustained maintaining a favorable geometry between the communicating satellites. The resulting intra-satellite geometry is exploited through use of widebeam crosslink antennas, simplified pointing techniques, and variable transmission rates for optimum communication efficiency from the mission satellites to communication satellites and ground receivers.

Patent #: 5,999,127
Author: Dezelan
Issue Date: December 07, 1999
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