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KA VS KU BAND : WHICH IS THE BEST FOR SATELLITE BROADBAND?

Jackie Dong

KA VS KU BAND : WHICH IS THE BEST FOR SATELLITE BROADBAND?

As the economics of providing Ka-band satellite communication services drive several new satellite deployments around the world, there is one question emerging among customers: Ka-band versus Ku-band — which is better? The answer to this question depends on the customer’s needs and the trade-offs that can be accepted.

1. What are the main differences between Ka band and Ku band?

One major difference is the frequency of each band, which affects the quality of the connection provided. Ku-band uses frequencies in the 12 to 18 GHz range, while Ka-band uses frequencies in the 26.5 to 40 GHz range. With a higher frequency, you can extract more bandwidth from a Ka-band system, which means a higher data transfer rate and, therefore, higher performance.

At the Ka-band frequencies, noise is higher than at Ku-band. So, in this example, with equal coverage on the ground and equal size receive antennas, the quality of the signal will be better at Ku-band. Proponents of Ka-band capacity point out that the Ka-band beams usually have higher EIRP values than Ku-band.

 

Ka-band

Ku-band

Availability

High

High

Bits per Hz (efficiency)

High

Low

Throughput (speed)

High

Comparatively low

Power Requirement

Lower

Higher

How does the coverage area of Ka-band and Ku band compare?

The Ku-band has the capability to cover an entire continent with a single beam, whereas the Ka-band has a smaller range, which can provide country-wide coverage through multiple beams. This isn’t an issue for Ka-band solutions if the connectivity provider’s infrastructure is adequate enough to cover the area they serve customers in.

Which is the better option - Ka-band or Ku-band? 

Not for certain, simply because the band chosen should depend on the circumstances surrounding its use. Making this decision means asking questions such as: how will the connectivity be used? What size area does the connectivity need to cover? What budget is available?

If you want to build station or have questions about selecting satellite antenna products, please free to write to Shaanxi Newstar for professional proposals. 

 

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