Date Added: Sep 2011
Communication via satellite begins when the satellite is positioned in the desired orbital position. Ground stations can communicate with LEO (Low Earth Orbiting) satellites only when the satellite is in their visibility region. The ground station's ideal horizon plane is in fact the visibility region under 0? of elevation angle. Because of natural barriers or too high buildings in urban areas, practical (visible) horizon plane differs from the ideal one. The duration of the visibility and so the communication duration varies for each LEO satellite pass at the ground station, since LEO satellites move too fast over the Earth. The range between the ground station and the LEO satellite depends on maximal elevation of satellite's path above the ground station.