This authoritative book provides a thorough understanding of the fundamental concepts of satellite communications (SATCOM) network design and performance assessments. You find discussions on a wide class of SATCOM networks using satellites as core components, as well as coverage key applications in the field. This in-depth resource presents a broad range of critical topics, from geosynchronous Earth orbiting (GEO) satellites and direct broadcast satellite systems, to low Earth orbiting (LEO) satellites, radio standards and protocols.This invaluable reference explains the many specific uses of satellite networks, including small-terminal wireless and mobile communications systems. Moreover, this book presents advanced topics such as satellite RF link analyses, optimum transponder loading, on-board processing, antenna characteristics, protected systems, information assurance, and spread spectrums. You are introduced to current and future SATCOM systems and find details on their performance supportabilities. This cutting-edge book also presents trends in multimedia satellite applications and IP services over satellites.