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satellite, n.

Forms:  Also 15 -yte, 16 -it.(Show Less)
Frequency (in current use): 
Etymology:  < French satellite (14th cent. in Littré), < Latin satellit-em   (nominative satelles  ) attendant or guard. Compare satelles n.

 1. An attendant upon a person of importance, forming part of his retinue and employed to execute his orders. Often with reproachful connotation, implying subserviency or unscrupulousness in the service. (Occas. with allusion to sense 2)This sense is not in Johnson, and save for quot. 1548   does not appear in our material until near the end of the 18th c. Quot. 1656   follows Cooper's explanation of Latin satelles, supplemented from Cotgrave's definition of the French word.

1548   Hall's Vnion: Richard III f. lijv,   Enuironed with his satellytes and yomen of the crowne.
1656   T. Blount Glossographia   Satellite, one retained to guard a mans person; a Yeoman of the Guard; a Serjeant, Catch-pole, one that attacheth.
1797   S. James Narr. Voy. 147   Our most august visitant..followed by his naked train of satellites.
1849   W. Irving Oliver Goldsmith (rev. ed.) xiii. 144   Boswell was..made happy by an introduction to Johnson, of whom he became the obsequious satellite.
1852   H. B. Stowe Uncle Tom's Cabin II. xxxii. 181   Legree encouraged his two black satellites to a kind of coarse familiarity with him.
1861   Trollope Framley Parsonage I. x. 202   The satellites of the nursery.
1864   J. F. Kirk Hist. Charles the Bold (U.S. ed.) II. iv. iii. 384   Tyrants, encompassed by their armed satellites.

1548—1864(Hide quotations)


 a. A small or secondary planet which revolves round a larger one. (See also satelles n.)  [The Latin satellites was first applied in 1611 by Kepler to the secondary planets revolving round Jupiter, recently discovered by Galileo, who had named them Sidera Medicæa.]

1665   Philos. Trans. (Royal Soc.) 1 71   A Satellite of Jupiter.
1665   Philos. Trans. (Royal Soc.) 1 71   The shadow of the Satellit between Jupiter and the Sun.
1693   R. Bentley Boyle Lect. viii. 14   Jupiter and Saturn..have many Satellites about them.
1734   tr. P. L. M. de Maupertuis Diss. Cœlestial Bodies 33 in J. Keill Exam. Burnet's Theory of Earth (ed. 2)    The Moon is the Earth's Secondary or Satellite.
1785   W. Cowper Task i. 766   We can spare The splendour of your lamps; they but eclipse Our softer satellite.
1870   R. A. Proctor Other Worlds than Ours (1872) viii. 187   We have no satisfactory evidence that the satellites of Jupiter and Saturn turn always the same face towards their primary.

1665—1870(Hide quotations)


 b. transf. and fig.

1771   T. Smollett Humphry Clinker I. 205   He too, like a portentous comet, has risen again above the court-horizon... Who are those two satellites that attend his motions?
1845   C. Darwin Jrnl. (ed. 2) xvii. 377   The archipelago is a little world within itself, or rather a satellite attached to America.
1887   Olivia M. Stone (title)    Tenerife and its six satellites.
1891   E. A. Freeman Sketches Fr. Trav. 126   At Poitiers the interest of the cathedral church is far smaller than that of its satellite the baptistery.

1771—1891(Hide quotations)


 c. A man-made object placed (or designed to be placed) in orbit around an astronomical body (usu. the earth).

[1880   W. H. G. Kingston tr. J. Verne Begum's Fortune xiii. 180   A projectile, animated with an initial speed twenty times superior to the actual speed, being ten thousand yards to the second, can never fail! This movement, combined with terrestrial attraction, destines it to revolve perpetually round our globe... Two hundred thousand dollars is not too much to have paid for the pleasure of having endowed the planetary world with a new star, and the earth with a second satellite.]
1936   Discovery Sept. 299/2   The scheme for building a metal outpost satellite and propelling it in a fixed orbit 600 miles above the earth's surface.
1945   A. C. Clarke in Wireless World Oct. 305/2   This ‘orbital’ velocity is 8 km per sec. (5 miles per sec), and a rocket which attained it would become an artificial satellite, circling the world for ever with no expenditure of power.
1955   Times 30 July 6/1   The satellite is expected to be about the size of a basketball, and will be shot into the upper atmosphere by a rocket, where it will circle the earth at an altitude of between 200 and 300 miles at a speed of about 18,000 miles an hour.
1956   Spaceflight 1 6/2   After the Earth satellite stage, the next target will almost certainly be the Moon.
1957   Spaceflight 1 49/1   Each satellite will be launched into its orbit by being ejected from the third stage of a multiple stage rocket.
1957   Times 7 Oct. 8/1   The Russian satellite soaring over the United States seven times a day has made an enormous impression on American minds.
1961   New Statesman 20 Jan. 80/2   The proposals for communications satellites for relaying telephone conversations (and television) around the world.
1964   Ann. Reg. 1963 185   Among other notable American achievements in space during the year was the launching of a communications satellite.
1972   Computers & Humanities 7 49   An experiment..was conducted during the fall of 1971 at Stanford, where users were able to communicate with a computer by using NASA's ATS-1 experimental satellite.
1977   Times 16 Dec. 16/1   Killer satellites are small space~craft. They carry an explosive charge which destroys itself and any nearby satellite on detonation.

1936—1977(Hide quotations)

 3. The name of:

 b. a humming-bird.

1832   J. Rennie Conspectus Butterflies & Moths Brit. 62   The Satellite (Glæa Satellitia, Stephens) appears in September.
1861   J. Gould Monogr. Trochilidæ III. Pl. 142   Calothorax Calliope. Mexican Satellite.
1882   Cassell's Nat. Hist. VI. 65   One of the largest species is the Satellite (Scopelosoma satellitia), which sometimes expands nearly two inches.

1832—1882(Hide quotations)


 4. Geom. satellite line, satellite point: see quot. 1857. Also used simply = satellite line at sense 7.

1857   A. Cayley Curves of 3rd Order in Coll. Math. Papers II. 383   It is a well-known theorem, that if at the points of intersection of a given line with a given cubic tangents are drawn to the cubic, these tangents again meet the cubic in three points which lie in a line; such line is in the present memoir termed the satellite line of the given line, and the point of intersection of the two lines is termed the satellite point of the given line; the given line in reference to its satellite line or point is termed the primary line.
1873   G. Salmon Treat. Higher Plane Curves (ed. 2) v. 170   A case where the satellite cuts the sides of the asymptotic triangle.

1857—1873(Hide quotations)


 5.   satellite vein   n. a vein that accompanies an artery (modern Latin vena satelles, vena comes).

1846   F. Brittan tr. J. F. Malgaigne Man. Operative Surg. 126   On the upper third of the fore-arm, the artery..has always two satellite veins.
1849–52   Todd's Cycl. Anat. & Physiol. IV. ii. 816/2   The satellite vein of the right subclavian artery.
1897   in New Sydenham Soc. Lexicon  

1846—1897(Hide quotations)


 a. A country or state politically or economically dependent upon and subservient to another.

[1776   T. Paine Wks. (1796) II. 24   In no instance hath nature made the satellite larger than its primary planet; and as England and America..reverse the common order of nature, it is evident that they belong to different systems: England to Europe, America to itself.]
1800   T. Johnson Let. 8 Apr. in J. Adams Wks. (1854) IX. 49   There is a great deal yet to be done to prevent our becoming a mere satellite of a mighty power.
1827   Macaulay Machiavelli in Ess. (1897) 43   The governments of the Peninsula ceased to form an independent system. Drawn from their old orbit by the attraction of the larger bodies which now approached them, they became mere satellites of France and Spain.
1930   Economist 8 Nov. 844/2   Do they portend a military alliance against France between a Fascist Italy and a Fascist Germany, with a bevy of East European satellites—Bulgaria, Albania, Hungary, Austria—to balance Poland and the Little Entente?
1936   Pacific Affairs Sept. 404   Outer Mongolia may well be called a satellite of the Soviet Union.
1941   Ann. Reg. 1940 204   This [sc. the Tripartite Pact of the Axis Powers] made Hungary a mere satellite of Germany.
1948   Sun (Baltimore) 9 Jan. 1/2   Several of the Soviet Union's satellites.
1974   M. B. Brown Econ. of Imperialism xii. 286   Cuba is not a satellite of the USSR in the same sense that other Latin American States are satellites of the USA.
1977   Time 21 Feb. 8/1   In Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Poland and even some of the less volatile satellites, the Russians and their local rulers are being forced to put out brushfires of discontent.

1800—1977(Hide quotations)


 b. A community or town that is economically or otherwise dependent on a nearby larger town or city.

1912   G. R. Taylor in Survey (N.Y.) 5 Oct. 14/2   In some sections of the South scarcely a city of any size lacks one or more satellites thrumming with spindle and shuttle.
1935   Archit. Rev. 77 188 (caption)    19th Century. Came the railways and with them the first general exodus, suburbs and satellites springing up round the railway stations.
1947   Daily Mail 22 May 1/1   We are apt to be too much concerned with the new satellites and ‘overspills’. We should first reconstruct the other cities.
1958   Manch. Guardian 30 June 6/2   And if Manchester itself is some way from Tatton, Manchester's proposed satellite at Lymm is much nearer.
1977   R.A.F. News 27 Apr. 8/2   No. 50(B) Squadron was then based at Skellingthorpe, west of Lincoln (a satellite of Swinderby).

1912—1977(Hide quotations)


 7. Spectroscopy. A spurious or subordinate spectral line; spec. one caused by an irregularity in the positions of lines in a diffraction grating. Also satellite line.

1904   Astrophysical Jrnl. 19 118   The appearance and disappearance, according to circumstances, of the satellite lines still remains a most curious fact.
1924   London, Edinb. & Dublin Philos. Mag. 6th Ser. 48 501   On moving the eyepiece back, the line broadened and a faint black ‘satellite’ split off from it, moving slowly across the grating.
1945   R. A. Sawyer Exper. Spectrosc. vii. 175   It often happens that satellites or diffuse edges will be observed for strong lines at the best obtainable focus.
1969 [see satellite country n. at Compounds 1d].
1971   Physics Bull. July 388/3   The centre line is due to Rayleigh scattering and the satellites arise from transverse ( t) and longitudinal ( l) phonons.

1904—1971(Hide quotations)


 8. Anat. Chiefly as satellite cell. Each of the cells that go to make up the membrane surrounding the nerve cell bodies in many ganglia, analogous to the Schwann cells that surround their axons; also, formerly, a Schwann cell.

[1908   G. Marinesco in Compt. Rend. Hebdom. des Séances et Mém. de la Soc. de Biol. LXV. 99   De toutes ces recherches, il résulte qu'il existe à l'état normal un équilibre entre la nutrition des cellules satellites et celle des cellules des ganglions sensitifs.]
1928   W. Penfield in E. V. Cowdry Special Cytol. II. xxx. 1055   Specific stains showed the perivascular and perineuronal oligoglia satellites to be definitely increased.
1954   M. Singer in R. O. Greep Histology xi. 216   Each cell body of spinal, cranial, and autonomic ganglia is completely encapsulated by a thin membrane composed of so-called satellite cells which contains small, scattered, and flattened nuclei.
1958   Exper. Cell Res. Suppl. V. 33   The structural characteristic which is present in all fibers so far studied..is the Schwann or satellite cell which..appears everywhere to enclose the axon.
1960   G. Causey Cell of Schwann v. 69   The regeneration of nerve fibres and their satellite cells in the tail of the tadpole.
1971   W. M. Copenhaver et al. Bailey's Textbk. Histol. (ed. 16) x. 259/1   When these companion cells are in association with a nerve cell body.., they are called satellite cells; when they provide ensheathment for axons, they are called neurilemma cells, or cells of Schwann.

1928—1971(Hide quotations)


 9. Cytology. A short section of a chromosome demarcated from the rest by a constriction (if terminal) or by two constrictions (if intercalary).  [The sense is due to S. G. Navashin, who used Russian spútnik satellite ( Izvestiya Imper. Akad. Nauk (1912) VI. 378).]

1926   C. D. Darlington in Jrnl. Genetics 16 246   Chromosome ‘G’ is seen to be approaching the pole with the satellite foremost; this means that the satellite is endowed with special responsiveness to the attraction of the pole.
1960   Lancet 14 May 1063/2   In some chromosomes the additional criterion of the presence of a satellite is available (table 1), but in view of the apparent morphological variation of satellites, they and their connecting strands are excluded in computing the indices.
1975   A. Löve & D. Löve Plant Chromosomes i. i. 26   A secondary constriction may demarcate a short part of the chromosome, either intercalary or, most frequently, terminally. Such a terminal piece is called a satellite.

1926—1975(Hide quotations)


 10. Bacteriol. A bacterial colony growing in culture near a second colony which is the source of a diffusible substance which promotes the growth of the first but is not produced by it; it consequently shows accelerated growth, or resists a substance which would otherwise poison it. Usu. attrib.

1938   in Dorland & Miller Med. Dict. (ed. 18) 1243/1.  
1940   M. Frobisher Fund. Bacteriol. (ed. 2) xxv. 355 (caption)    ‘Satellite’ formation by Hemophilus influenzae on ‘chocolate-agar’ plate.
1943   Jrnl. Bacteriol. 45 522/1   The development of satellites depended upon the concentration of sulfonamide, the susceptibility of the satellite strain, the temperature of incubation, and the size of the inoculum of both satellite and inhibitor.
1975   Jrnl. Clin. Microbiol. 1 90/2   The satellite growth of Haemophilus species around a colony of Staphylococcus can be attributed not only to NAD but also to catalase, which is produced by staphylococci.

1938—1975(Hide quotations)


 11. Molecular Biol. A portion of the DNA of a genome distinguished from the rest of the genome by its distinctive base composition and density. Freq. attrib.

1961   S. Kit in Jrnl. Molecular Biol. III. 711   The mean buoyant densities of the principal and the satellite mouse DNA bands were 1·701 and 1·690 g cm−3, respectively.
1962   S. Kit in Jrnl. Molecular Biol. IV. 439   Calf thymus satellite was found at the same position in each of three different DNA preparations isolated from thymus tissue obtained from different animals.
1970   New Scientist 27 Aug. 406/1   Discovered originally in the mouse, where it constitutes some 10 per cent of the total DNA in each cell of the animal, satellite DNA can be distinguished from the rest by its different density, and by the fact that it apparently consists of repeating base sequences—i.e., multiple copies of a given sequence repeated again and again.
1977   Rees & Jones Chromosome Genetics ii. 22   Exceptional DNA segments may have an unusually high or low G + C content. When plotted, these fractions appear as heavy or light satellites respectively at the tails of the ‘main-band’ DNA. Heavy satellites are found in the guinea pig and in human DNA. Light satellites..are less common.

1961—1977(Hide quotations)


 12. Used attrib. to designate a computer or computer terminal distant from, but connected to and serving, a main computer.

1966   C. J. Sippl Computer Dict. & Handbk. 278   As a satellite system the real-time system relieves the larger system of time consuming input and output functions as well as performing preprocessing and postprocessing functions.
1970   O. Dopping Computers & Data Processing vi. 95   Input data in cards or paper tape are converted to magnetic tape by the satellite computer.
1971   E. F. Schoeters in B. de Ferranti Living with Computer viii. 68   The way in which their huge networks of small satellite computers, or calculating terminals, connected to big machines in London behave..will show just how much more work has to be done.

1966—1971(Hide quotations)


 13. attrib. passing into adj. That is a satellite to something else; subsidiary, subordinate; associated; ancillary.

1892   B. Potter Jrnl. 8 Aug. (1966) 245   We..found the thirteen or fourteen vans drawn up in the town square, and covered with a tarpaulin, with several satellite peep shows.
1923   W. N. Shaw Forecasting Weather v. 115   Two detached secondary or satellite depressions.
1926   H. Macpherson Mod. Astron. 75   The satellite-systems of the outer planets are of a different order.
1931   Economist 17 Oct. 699/1   The Indian currency and..the various ‘satellite’ currencies of the Crown Colonies and Possessions.
1939   Oxoniensia 4 13   Post-holes 1.., 3 and 6 were also provided with from two to four satellite sockets and slots for supports.
1949   Caribbean Q. 1 iii. 43   A central model farm..would carry on intensive dairy farming... The satellite farms would be run by skilled farmers.
1957   Observer 8 Sept. 7/3   When fashion makes a decisive move innumerable satellite trades are affected.
1965   B. Sweet-Escott Baker St. Irregular iii. 77   This was to be their home for the next four years and became in due course surrounded by a series of satellite premises.
1967   Boston Sunday Globe 23 Apr. (Mag.) 33/1   Satellite clinics for children and pregnant mothers..run jointly by several Harvard affiliated hospitals and the City of Boston.
1969   Wall St. Jrnl. 1 Dec. 9/1   Pan Am..is trying to sell passengers on use of the ‘satellite’ terminal facilities around the New York metropolitan area.
1972   Accountant 26 Oct. 518/2   Satellite reports, or supplementary reports, would be prepared for the particular interests of particular users.
1976   NBR Marketplace (Wellington, N.Z.) iii. 37/2   The satellite seminar was joined by dozens of doctors and nurses.
1976   Offshore Engineer July 20/3   A cluster of 10 wells with four satellite wells for water and gas injection.

1892—1976(Hide quotations)



 C1. General attrib.
 a. (In sense 2c.)

  satellite camera   n.

1963Satellite camera [see satellite picture n. at Compounds 2].
1966   P. O'Donnell Sabre-tooth xiv. 185   The end of the journey..was on neutral ground, in an area where spy-plane or satellite cameras would never seek.

1963—1966(Hide quotations)


  satellite communication   n. (also satellite communications)

1959   J. H. Straubel et al. Space Weapons 243 (Index),   Satellite communication.
1960   Signal XIV. 32/1   A means of communication is needed that will immediately provide several hundred channels linking key cities throughout the world. This requirement will be filled by a satellite communication system.
1961   Times Rev. Industry Feb. 26/3   Last autumn a team of British experts visited the United States to discuss with their opposite numbers the feasibility of establishing a satellite communications system.
1964   Economist 1 Aug. 481/2   Complex legal controversies arising from satellite communications systems.

1959—1964(Hide quotations)


  satellite killer   n.

1977   Guardian Weekly 2 Oct. 15/2   A new weapon that could destroy Soviet satellites in space... Vought is expected to have a battle version of the satellite killer ready to test in space in about two years.
1977   Time 17 Oct. 32/1   The U.S. will now emphasize efforts to design an American satellite killer to defend against the Soviet version.

1977—1977(Hide quotations)


  satellite launcher   n.

1959   Daily Tel. 2 July 5/5   This satellite launcher is about 110 ft long and 15 in in diameter at the base.
1961   New Scientist 19 Jan. 133/1   Several of these countries will discuss the specific proposal for the development of a satellite-launcher based on Blue Streak.

1959—1961(Hide quotations)


  satellite navigation   n.

1967   Oceanogr. & Marine Biol. 5 145   In February 1965 Atlantis II returned to the area to carry out a hydrographic and coring survey of this area using a satellite navigation system and ship-board computer for the location of this small area.
1975   Offshore Progress—Technol. & Costs (Shell Briefing Service) 7   With satellite navigation, however, the rig can fix its own position by computer, processing signals received from orbiting satellites.

1967—1975(Hide quotations)


  satellite observatory   n.

1953   J. N. Leonard Flight into Space 159   They suspect that the human intellect is approaching a boundary of mystery which its present tools cannot penetrate. Some of them feel that the satellite observatory may be the necessary tool.

1953—1953(Hide quotations)


  satellite programme   n.

1959   Daily Tel. 13 May 1   Britain has decided to take the essential steps to enable scientists here to participate in a satellite programme.

1959—1959(Hide quotations)


  satellite-tracking   n.

1958   A. Budrys in Aldiss & Harrison Decade 1950s (1976) 68   I'm assigned to the satellite-tracking station.
1969   Listener 20 Feb. 233/2   Satellite tracking is not as easy as it appears.

1958—1969(Hide quotations)


  satellite-borne adj.

1962   W. B. Thompson Introd. Plasma Physics i. 4   Recently, rocket- and satellite-borne counters have detected belts of energetic radiation, electrons and ions, high above the earth's atmosphere.
1974   Sci. Amer. June 132/2   Within less than a decade the bulk of trans~oceanic telephony (and all transoceanic television) has become satellite-borne.

1962—1974(Hide quotations)


  satellite-to-home adj.

1967   Economist 1 July 32/2   What about lasers? What about direct satellite-to-home broadcasting?.. Perhaps the only way in which the federal government could expect to keep abreast of the developments in communications technologies would be to set up a Department of Communication.
1973   Computers & Humanities 7 226   The uses of such wonders as switched data networks, computer terminals, mobile radio transceivers, and satellite-to-home-receiver television transmission.

1967—1973(Hide quotations)

 d. (In sense 6.)

  satellite city   n.

1912   G. R. Taylor in Survey (N.Y.) XXIX. 5 Oct. 23/1   Like camp sutlers, the traffickers in demoralization are quick to follow the trail of satellite cities.
1960   Washington Post 20 Dec. a14   They urge that the growth of this region from some 4 million to 9 million persons in the remainder of this century be organized in a pattern of some 50 new satellite cities, each of 75,000 to 150,000 population. A dozen of them would fill the corridor between Baltimore and Washington.
1977   New Yorker 13 June 94/2   The new Taichung port..is to include a separate satellite city.

1912—1977(Hide quotations)


  satellite community   n.

1946   Nature 13 July 39/2   The Manchester request for compulsory powers to buy land for the creation of satellite communities.
1970   R. Stavenhagen in I. L. Horowitz Masses in Lat. Amer. vii. 254   Not only in the city but also in the ‘satellite communities’ is commerce usually in Ladino hands.

1946—1970(Hide quotations)


  satellite country   n.

1956   Times 7 Feb. 8/5   Dropping leaflets over the satellite countries..was begun by Radio Free Europe in April, 1954.
1969   A. G. Frank Lat. Amer. (1970) i. 4   Relations between the satellite underdeveloped and the now developed metropolitan countries.
1976   B. Freemantle November Man iv. 43   The Americans actually believe we [sc. the Russians] are going to withdraw all our troops from the satellite countries.

1956—1976(Hide quotations)


  satellite government   n.

1949   A. Koestler Promise & Fulfilm. i. xii. 133   Experts of the Foreign Office..tried to set up a puppet Jewish Agency as a kind of satellite Government.

1949—1949(Hide quotations)


  satellite nation   n.

1916   C. M. Meredith tr. F. Naumann Central Europe vi. 180   What is meant by a satellite nation..? We might also say a planet State. Such States have their own life.
1956   E. E. Cummings Let. 26 Nov. (1969) 253   Urging (via night & day broadcasts) the socalled satellite nations to revolt from colossal Russia.

1916—1956(Hide quotations)


  satellite state   n.

1916   C. M. Meredith tr. F. Naumann Central Europe vi. 181   Round about the satellite States there still exists a certain mass of unorganised national material.
1943   Ann. Reg. 1942 176   Their [sc. Pan-Germans'] plan was that Germany..should carve out in the Danube basin several satellite states.
1950   Sun (Baltimore) 17 July 11/2   Fortifications toughening the ragged western borders of central Europe's satellite states.
1976   Survey Summer 41   Here was the authentic voice of the unconscious Western desire to believe that the satellite states of the Soviet Union were free.

1916—1976(Hide quotations)


  satellite town   n.

1925   C. B. Purdom (title)    The building of satellite towns.
1929   Times 17 July 17/6   Since neither complete decentralization nor the proposal to ‘departmentalize’ the government of Greater Paris is found to give general satisfaction, the system of ‘satellite towns’ has been suggested as a way out.
1933   Archit. Rev. 74 166/2   The proposed formation of a ring of satellite towns around the immediate radius of London.
1946   F. J. Osborn Green Belt Cities I. 182   Satellite Town. This term was first used in Great Britain in 1919 as an alternative description of Welwyn Garden City... Some planning writers have thoughtlessly renewed the old confusion by using the term Satellite Town to describe an Industrial Garden Suburb. It is better reserved for a Garden City or country town, at a moderate distance from a large city, but physically separated from that city by a Country Belt.
1955   Sci. Amer. Jan. 40/3   As population continues to move from cities out to ever more distant suburbs and satellite towns [etc.].

1925—1955(Hide quotations)


  satellite township   n.

1971   Rand Daily Mail (Johannesburg) 27 Mar. 3/7   A giant new satellite township near Pretoria..will provide housing..for about 200 000 White people.

1971—1971(Hide quotations)


  satellite airfield   n. an airfield auxiliary to and serving, if necessary, as a substitute for a larger airfield.

1941   F. H. Joseph Lett. home from Brit. at War (1942) 38   Clear skies over West Raynham's satellite airfield, Massingham.
1951   O. Berthoud tr. P. H. Clostermann Big Show i. 20   We spent the last three weeks of our training at Montford Bridge, a small satellite airfield lost in the hills.
1968   Wall St. Jrnl. 25 Sept. 36/1   Flight delays at World Chamberlain and the satellite airfields are almost non-existent.

1941—1968(Hide quotations)


  satellite broadcasting   n. broadcasting in which the signal is transmitted via an artificial satellite; spec. = direct broadcasting by satellite at direct adj. 6i.

1964   M. McLuhan Understanding Media xxv. 252   [Man's] central nervous system..is now approaching an extension of consciousness with satellite broadcasting.
1984   Listener 8 Mar. 2/1   Barry Fox tries to make sense of the current debate about satellite broadcasting.
1987   Sunday Tel. 22 Feb. 23/7   Cotton spent the next two years working on the BBC's plans, now effectively shelved, for satellite broadcasting.

1964—1987(Hide quotations)


  satellite photo   n. (also satellite photograph) a photograph taken from an artificial satellite.

1963   Van Dijk & Rutherford in Wexler & Caskey Rocket & Satellite Meteorol. 305   Satellite photographs were obtained of a cut-off low over southeast Australia.
1976   H. Kemelman Wednesday Rabbi got Wet xii. 61   The noon broadcast had been almost entirely devoted to..Hurricane Betsy. There were..satellite photos of the eastern coast.
1977   A. Hallam Planet Earth 43 (caption)    A satellite photograph of the Andes.

1963—1977(Hide quotations)


  satellite photography   n.

1971   P. O'Donnell Impossible Virgin v. 107   I'll have it checked by our own Map Section... There's something there which is detectable by satellite photography.

1971—1971(Hide quotations)


  satellite picture   n. a satellite photograph.

1963   Van Dijk & Rutherford in Wexler & Caskey Rocket & Satellite Meteorol. 305   Facility in interpretation of meteorological satellite pictures can best be achieved by exercises in which clouds of known type and distribution are charted and compared with pictures of the same cloud taken by satellite camera.
1977   L. P. White Aerial Photogr. & Remote Sensing for Soil Survey vii. 73   Early examination of coverage of this kind did, however, serve to indicate the possibility of using automatic satellite pictures for purposes other than meteorology and oceanology.

1963—1977(Hide quotations)


  satellite station   n.  (a) an artificial satellite; spec. (see quot. 1950);  (b) a secondary radio station which receives and retransmits programmes, so as to improve local reception.

1945   Wireless World Oct. 306 (caption)    Three satellite stations would ensure complete [radio] coverage of the globe.
1950   W. Proell Handbk. Space Flight 174   Satellite station, synonym for space station... Space station, a habitable vehicle placed in a satellite orbit around a planetary body, for use in refueling of space ships, communications relaying, or military use.
1954   E. Pangborn Mirror for Observers (1955) i. i. 21,   I understand men will have their first satellite station in a very short time, four or five years.
1959   Times Lit. Suppl. 30 Oct. 631/4   The cost of building a moon rocket at a satellite station, including the fuel of the rockets carrying the materials, he estimates as £40m.
1959   Proc. Inst. Electr. Engineers New Ser. 5 416/1   A number of low-power satellite stations are therefore planned... They will be designed to..pick up signals from an existing B.B.C. station and retransmit them on a different channel for local reception.
1959   Proc. Inst. Electr. Engineers New Ser. 5 416/1   The B.B.C.'s plan for extending and improving the coverage of the television service and of..sound services on v.h.f. by building low-power satellite stations in various parts of the country.
1962   Rep. Comm. Broadcasting 1960 197 in Parl. Papers 1961–2 (Cmnd. 1753) X. 259   It is possible to provide low-powered relay stations..to extend coverage still further... These satellite stations..have been planned as a stage by stage project.

1945—1962(Hide quotations)


  satellite telescope   n. a telescope in orbit beyond the range of atmospheric distortion.

1951   J. P. Marbarger Space Med. 26   If we turn such a satellite telescope to the outer reaches of the universe, the planets and the stars, we shall find observation conditions which no terrestrial observatory could equal.
1960   Aeroplane 99 358/1   It turns out that this is a design study into a stabilised platform for a small satellite telescope.

1951—1960(Hide quotations)


  satellite television   n. television in which the signal is transmitted via an artificial satellite.

1966   B.B.C. Handbk. 53   The BBC's first satellite television transmissions were shown in 1962.
1971   L. Koppett N.Y. Times Guide Spectator Sports xii. 194   Satellite television.

1966—1971(Hide quotations)


Draft additions September 2004


  satellite phone   n. = satellite telephone n. at Additions.

[1972   Washington Post 2 June c8 (headline)    Satellite phone link.]
1982   Sports Illustr. 9 Aug. 17   They had a satellite phone on board..so I called in every night to find out how the Braves did.
2002   India Weekly 2 Aug. 30/1   Guerrillas..have initiated a move to acquire state-of-the-art satellite phones of Chinese origin to improve their communications.

1982—2002(Hide quotations)


Draft additions September 2004

  satellite telephone   n. a telephone that transmits its signal via a geostationary communications satellite, thus enabling a call to be made from any location.

1968   N.Y. Times 20 Dec. 17/3   Intelsat 3, the new commercial communications satellite..will more than double trans-Atlantic satellite telephone and television channels.
1980   U.S. News & World Rep. 29 Sept. 36/2   On many occasions, for example, Carter speaks via satellite telephone directly with Egypt's President Anwar Sadat.
2003   Daily Tel. 28 May 3/3   The battery on his satellite telephone went dead, leaving him with only a signal beacon as a means of contact with his team.

1968—2003(Hide quotations)