Satellite communication systems are the means of realizing a global broadband integrated services digital network. Due to the statistical nature of the integrated services traffic, the resulting rate uctuations and burstiness render congestion control a complicated, yet indispensable function. The long propagation delay of the earth-satellite link further imposes severe demands and constraints on the congestion control schemes, as well as the media access control techniques and retransmission protocols that can be employed in a satellite network. The problems in designing satellite network protocols, as well as some of the solutions proposed to tackle these problems, will be the primary focus of this survey.
Complete paper in Adobe Acrobat format.