VISIT OUR NETWORK:

Space Briefing Book:


Components of a Satellite

Written by: Space Foundation Editorial Team

The parts of a satellite vary depending on the satellite’s function; however, there are some components commonly found on most satellites. These include:

generic diagram of a satellite

A generic diagram of a satellite. Credit: The Space Foundation

Antennas: Satellite antenna systems are used to receive and transmit signals to and from Earth.

Command and Data Handling: The operational heart of a satellite, command and control systems monitor every aspect of the satellite and receive commands from Earth for operation.

Guidance and Stabilization: Sensors monitor the satellite’s position to ensure it remains in the correct orbit and is oriented toward the correct target. If necessary, thrusters and other maneuvers allow a satellite to fine-tune its position and orientation.

Housing: Constructed from strong materials that can withstand the harsh space environment.

Power: Most satellites rely on a solar array to convert sunlight into energy.

Thermal Control: Guards satellite equipment against extreme changes in temperature.

Transponders: Uplink and downlink signals arrive and depart at different frequencies. Transponders convert uplinked frequencies to downlink frequencies and then amplify the converted transmission for sending to Earth.


Previous Article

Next Article

»