The Hyper Hospital is a prototype networked telemedicine system which uses virtual reality. We measured the performance of a novel multimedia network based on satellite communications. The network was a hybrid system consisting of a satellite channel in one direction and a terrestrial channel in the other. Each user was equipped with a standard satellite communication receiver and a telephone connection. Requests from the users were sent by modem and telephone line and responses were received by satellite. The user requests were initiated by clicking buttons on a World Wide Web browser screen. The transmission rates of satellite and normal telephone-line communications were compared for standardized text data. Satellite communication was three to five times faster. The transmission rate was also measured for standardized graphical data (GIF format). With a file size of about 400 kByte, satellite-mediated communication was 10 times faster than telephone lines. The effect of simultaneous access on performance was also explored. For simultaneous access of nine users to a single graphics file, 78% of the transmission speed was obtained in comparison with that of a single user. The satellite-based system showed excellent high-speed communication performance, particularly for multimedia data.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Informatics