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DIY Comms and Control for Amateur Space by Sandy Antunes

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Chapter 6. Comm Budgets

Allocations

If you are a satellite builder, you are going to have some sort of bandwidth limit on how much data you can send and receive from your spacecraft. To fit your mission in that communications budget, you have to make a comm budget. Even if you aren’t a communications engineer, even if someone else is providing your communications network and antenna and ground commanding and data handling for you, as the mission designer, you need to work out a comm budget.

A comm budget is, at its heart, something most people already do with their cell phone plans. Say you have an old plan that gives you 50 free text messages a month. That’s the core of your comm budget—50 texts per month. What makes satellite comm budgets ...

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