WildBlue Satellite Internet Glossary

Anik F2: The name of the satellite that provides WildBlue Satellite Internet broadband access. Anik F2 is a Boeing 702 satellite that delivers broadband access using the ka band radio frequency that's used for inter-satellite transmissions. Relax - I promise that there are definitions for all of those words down below.
Information on Anik F2.

Azimuth: One of two measurements needed to point your satellite dish in the proper direction and angle to receive signals from a satellite. The azimuth is the horizontal angle (side to side). The other measurement is elevation. The actual angles for both depend on your physical location relative to the satellite location.
Check Azimuth for Anik F2.

Broadband: Communications equipment or systems that use a wide portion of the electromagnetic spectrum for transmission. Think of it as the difference between a one-lane country road and an 8-lane superhighway. The broader the frequency range, the more traffic that can be accommodated. These days, broadband often refers to internet connection, and includes cable internet, DSL and satellite transmission. Broadband is faster, generally is "always on" and usually more stable than a dial-up connection.

DOCSIS: Stands for Data Over Cable System Interface Specification. It provides compatibility with cable modem standards for bandwidth and packet structure. The Wild Blue satellite internet modem is a DOCSIS modem.

Elevation: One of the two measurements required in order to point your satellite dish to the proper direction and angle to receive signals for a satellite. The elevation is the vertical angle (up and down). The other measurement is azimuth. The actual angles for both depend on your physical location relative to the satellite.

FAP: Stands for fair access policy. Like any broadband connection, a satellite connection is a connection shared by many users. A 'fair access policy' sets a per user cap on download and upload usage over a period of time to ensure that all users get their fair share of bandwidth. WildBlue FAP.

Footprint: is the term used to refer to the area that a satellite can "see" from its orbit. For most technical purposes, the satellite's footprint is its area of coverage.

Gateway: or GES or gateway station provides a connection to the Internet backbone for each subscriber located in its area. In very simple terms, when you send click on a web page your satellite dish sends a stream of data requesting that page to the satellite. The satellite transmits that data to a gateway station, which actually retrieves the page and sends the data to back to the satellite. The satellite then sends the data back to your dish antenna and the web page is displayed on your computer. There are five WildBlue Gateway stations to cover the United States.

Geosynchronous Orbit: simply means that the satellite revolves around the Earth at the same speed that the Earth rotates. Because the speed of the satellite's orbit is synchronized with the speed of the Earth's rotation, the satellite is always at the same position above the Earth's surface. This is important in determining where to position your satellite dish, since the dish must be able to 'see' the satellite in order to receive its transmissions. Anik F2, the satellite that provides WildBlue satellite broadband is located at 11.1W.

ka band: ( kay ay band ) is a portion of the electromagnetic spectrum that is used by satellites to communicate with fixed and mobile stations.

LOS: stands for line of sight . In order for the WildBlue satellite to transmit data to and from your computer, it needs to be able to 'see' your satellite dish. In order to be able to use WildBlue you'll need to find a spot with a clear view of the southern sky between 30 and 60 degrees above the horizon.

Relay station: is a satellite that relays data. Relay stations allow satellites to transmit data to areas outside its own footprint.

Satellite: A satellite is any body that orbits another body. In communications terms, a satellite is a specialized receiver/transmitter that orbits the Earth at a specified location.

Spot beam technology: uses many narrow beams to transmit data to different locations rather than using one large beam to cover an entire area. The advantage to spot beam technology is that it allows frequencies to be reused, proving more service to more people. WildBlue uses 36 spot beams to provide coverage for the entire contiguous United States.

TRIA: stands for Transmit Receive Integrated Assembly. It transmits and receives data to and from the WildBlue satellite. It's located on the bottom of the arm of your satellite dish.

VOIP: is voice over IP - broadband telephone. Any telephone transmission that uses an IP address to broadcast voice.

WildBlue-1: is the second WildBlue satellite tentatively scheduled for launch in late 2005 or early 2006. It will allow WildBlue Satellite Internet service to deliver better service and reach even more subscribers.