Communication satellite systems are those intended to convey a communication, typically digital data, from a sender to a receiver.
A satellite broadcast system is intended to distribute identical content from one origination point to many reception points within the common program area. The satellite broadcast system may divide its total service area (coverage area) into multiple common program areas, each of which receive a common set of content. Within the United States, typical common program areas can be the time zones or local television channel broadcast areas (“local into local”).
The proposed spectrum efficiency metric is Information bits per second per Hz of spectrum consumed within each common program area (“bits / (second – Hz)”).
The spectrum efficiency metric needs to be assessed within each common program area because the number and size (square miles) of the common program areas are determined by the intended service objective and are therefore not an appropriate driver of the spectrum efficiency. Whether a broadcast service is intended to deliver a single program, such as the Super Bowl, to the entire United States, or to deliver localized content to local areas such as individual US states is determined by the service objective and is not an appropriate measure of spectrum efficiency. Rather, broadcast system spectrum efficiency is determined by how efficiently the spectrum within each common program area is utilized.8 A broadcast satellite system can deliver the same content to an arbitrarily large number of users within the common program area. Adding users does not consume any of the system capacity, as with terrestrial broadcast over-the-air television, so the number of users does not need to be considered when defining the spectrum efficiency metric.