Reconfigurable Intelligent Surface Empowered Terahertz Communication for LEO Satellite Networks

07/08/2020 ∙ by Kürşat Tekbıyık, et al. ∙ 0

The revolution in the low earth orbit (LEO) satellite networks will impose changes on their communication models, shifting from the classical bent-pipe architectures to more sophisticated networking platforms. Triggered by the technological advancements in the microelectronics and micro-systems, the terahertz (THz) band emerges as a strong candidate for the associated inter-satellite link (ISL) due to its high data rate promise. Yet, the propagation conditions of the THz band need to be properly modeled and/or controlled by utilizing reconfigurable intelligent surfaces (RISs) to assess their full potential. In this work, we first provide an assessment of the use of THz for the ISL, and quantify the impact of the misalignment fading on the error performance. Then, to compensate for the high path loss associated with the high carrier frequencies, we propose the use of RISs that are mounted on the neighboring satellites to enable signal propagation and to further improve the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). Based on the mathematical analysis of the problem, we present the closed-form error rate expressions for RIS-assisted ISLs under misalignment fading. Numerical results demonstrate that the proposed RIS empowered THz communication solution reveals significant performance improvement introduced by the usage of RIS.

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