Have you ever asked yourself how does satellite TV work and what are its most important functions? This article will hopefully answer some of the basic questions on this subject.
First of all, let’s establish the basics: satellite TV at its root is the broadcasting of video and audio signals, sent by the satellites to the dishes which are placed on the Earth’s surface. These satellites are on a geostationary orbit.
Yes, satellites can almost be considered a modern wonder and they are the ones which make so many things possible, and not only in satellite TV. They have revolutionized communications. They orbit our planet in the Clarke Belt, which is a region of space found 22,300 miles above the Equator line.
And now let’s talk about the transponders. They are the ones that carry the signal to the Earth, and each satellite has a number of them. The signals being carried are different in nature. Usually, they are transmitted on a few important bands, the C Band, the Ku Band and the Ka Band. The frequency of the signal is the most important element which is being defined by these various types of bands.
Now, these signals must travel over 20,000 miles, 22,300 more precisely. They are then picked up on the Earth’s surface by the satellite dishes. A satellite dish’s main purpose is to pick up these signals and reflect them further away. Even though a dish can be as small as 18 inches across, it will still manage to deliver the signal to the feedhorn.
And now, in its journey, the satellite signal gets to the feedhorn. So what is a feedhorn? A feedhorn is part of the satellite dish. The feedhorn’s purpose is to receive the signal and carry it over once more to the LNB. Then, the LNB will amplify the signal in order to convert it to a frequency which will be more suitable for a transmission which is made over cable.
And now we get to another unknown term, the LNB. LNB is an abbreviation from Low Noise Block, and its purpose is the one mentioned earlier. The cable is known under the term of IFL, an abbreviation of Intra Facility Link. The IFL is the means with the help of which the LNB transmits the signal to your receiver. Then, the last step of the process is done by the receiver, which transmits the signal to your television set.
And here is where the signal’s journey ends. It is pretty fascinating when you think about all the technology which is involved in the process and all the steps and transformations the signal will have to go through. So now you know how satellite TV works in its most basic of forms.