The use of IP satellite networks is gaining increasing momentum due to their ability to deliver communication services to difficult to reach regions or to nation-wide areas. The figure below shows the general architecture for such a system. 



• Satellite gateways (SGs), which are traffic aggregators sitting at the edge of network and usually serving more than one user, e.g. residents of a specific remote community. A remote and ground gateway are shown, the remote gateway acts as an aggregation point for remote community traffic and the ground gateway provides an aggregation point for services hosted in the core network.

• Satellite, whose main role is to forward the traffic across attached satellite terminals, i.e. gateways.

• Network Control Center (NCC) is a logical entity that controls the satellite network. NCC performs different functions including synchronizing terminals, resource management, alarm management, security management, performance management, billing and accounting.

In this architecture, SGs usually represent a bottleneck, where for example web browsing at a client machine, suffers from long page load time due to the long RTT (~600ms for Geostationary Satellites) and the limited bandwidth of the link. In such an Internet access system there is an increasing demand for content rich services such as VoIP and Video streaming. This demand is the driving force for research in the area of data optimisation and QoS management in satellite backhaul systems.

The main objective of BACOPT is to research and develop a novel framework to manage/reduce the bandwidth requirement and thus to optimise capacity utilisation in the satellite back-haul. The BACOPT framework includes the following elements:

  1. Central decision and bandwidth management providing QoS at the application and transport planes.
  2. The real-time characterization of services, as well as the prediction of future services that may be required in the immediate future. 
  3. The optimization of Internet traffic using techniques such as compression, caching,
  4. The proactive prediction/reservation of bandwidth based on traffic flows.


Enterprise Ireland and Altobridge Ltd.

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