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Advantages of MEO Orbit | disadvantages of MEO Orbit

This page covers advantages and disadvantages of MEO Orbit. It mentions MEO Orbit advantages and MEO Orbit disadvantages. MEO stands for Medium Earth Orbit.

There are three main types of orbits viz. LEO, MEO and GEO based on distances from lowest to the highest from the Earth. There are orbits around the earth where satellites are installed after their launch. Following are the features of MEO orbit.
• Orbit period: 2 to 8 hours
• Orbit height from Earth: 5000 to 12000 Km
• Life of satellite in the orbit: Long
• Propagation loss in the orbit: High
• Number of satellites to cover entire regions on Earth: 8 to 20

MEO orbit

The figure-1 depicts MEO (Medium Earth Orbit).
LEO vs MEO vs GEO and satellite basics for more information.

Advantages of MEO orbit

Following are the advantages of MEO orbit:
➨MEO satellites are launched at higher altitude compare to LEO satellites. Hence less number of satellites are needed to cover entire area of the Earth.
➨MEO satellites are launched at lesser height compare to GEO satellites. Hence time delay from earth to satellite and viceversa is less (about 40 ms) compare to GEO satellites (about 120 ms).
➨It requires slightly higher transmission power compare to LEO satellites.
➨The system is cheaper compare to GEO.

Disadvantages of MEO orbit

Following are the disadvantages of MEO orbit:
➨The signals become weak when they reach earth from MEO compare to LEO. This is due to higher altitude of MEO in comparison to LEO. Hence more transmit power is needed to overcome pathloss and other attenuating atmosphere.
➨It is visible for only 2 to 8 hours from earth. Hence satellites are requires to be tracked from the Earth due to their rotation.
➨The system is more expensive compare to LEO.
➨Multiple MEO satellites are needed to cover the region continuously.

Also refer advantages and disadvantages of LEO >> and GEO >>.

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