What are VSATs?
VSATs, or Very Small Aperture Terminals, are small earth stations used for two-way communication via satellite. They're designed for remote locations lacking trained technical staff. VSATs are operated from a hub station where access is controlled and information is managed to optimize the overall performance and loading of the network.
Typical VSAT consists of an outdoor unit and an indoor unit.
Enclosed within the outdoor unit are:
- LNB and SSPA. The SSPA also includes a up-converter, so it is often called a block up-converter (BUC)
- Located at the antenna to minimize microwave losses that reduce performance
- No maintenance required because electronics are protected by an enclosure
Resembles a cable or DSL modem, or may be contained in one or more cabinets the size of a PC.
HughesNet DirecWay VSAT for an enterprise network
Gilat Starband VSAT for home Internet access
iDirect Technologies VSAT and supported LAN
The indoor unit of the VSAT becomes a router in a local area network (LAN), providing Internet Protocol services and applications to locally-connected computers.