Collaborative Data Downloading by Using Inter-Satellite Links in LEO Satellite Networks

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Article number7805169
Pages (from-to)1523-1532
Journal / PublicationIEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications
Issue number3
Online published4 Jan 2017
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2017
Externally publishedYes


Satellite systems have attracted great attention from academic and industrial communities in recent years. There are many satellites that have been launched for weather forecast, environment monitoring, and target surveillance. One important task of the satellites is to download the data they have collected in space to the ground servers via earth stations (ESs). Since satellites move at high speed along their own orbits and have very limited contact time with ESs, satellites may not be able to download all the data they have to the ground on time. In this paper, we propose a collaborative scheme that allows satellites to offload data among themselves using inter-satellite links (ISLs) before they come into contact with the ES, such that satellites will carry the right amount of data according to the length of their contact time with the ES and the throughput of data downloading at the ES is maximized. We develop an iterative optimization algorithm that jointly schedules data offload among the satellites and data downloading from satellites to the ES. Extensive simulations have been conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of our proposed method. The simulation results show that the data downloading throughput by using ISL data offload can be increased significantly. In many cases, the throughput reaches close to 100% of the capacity of the ES.

Research Area(s)

  • collaborative data downloading, inter-satellite links, LEO satellite network, satellite data downloading, satellite routing