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VSAT – Very Small Aperture Terminal

VSAT means Very Small Aperture Terminal, which in plain English means a two-way satellite Internet antenna that is less than 3 meters in diameter. Any earth-based satellite antenna larger than that is considered an Earth Station.

VSATs come in all sizes and shapes, most are curved so that they concentrate reflected Radio Frequency (RF) into a more narrowly focused area where it can be most easily received by the antenna’s electronics. VSATs can be installed on buildings, boats, vehicles, trains, planes, or ground mounted.

VSATs mounted on buildings or on the ground are typically larger that vehicle mounted or marine mounted VSAT antennas. In most cases the larger the VSAT antenna is the more data can be received and transmitted. Larger antennas are naturally easier to put onto building and ground mounts than onto vehicles and vessels.

Some VSATS are made to be highly portable, many break down into cases small enough that they can be checked as airline baggage; which also means that they can be taken almost anywhere and in almost any kind of vehicle, whether it is a commercial airliner, jeep, small boat, trailer, helicopter, pickup truck or whatever other transportation method is available to transport the equipment to whatever remote location that temporary satellite communications is needed to be established.

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