How a Satellite Dish Works

A satellite dish is an antenna designed to focus on a specific broadcast source. The standard dish consists of a parabolic (bowl-shaped) surface and a central feed horn. A controller sends it through the horn, and the dish focuses the signal into a relatively narrow beam. A narrow beam is generated as the dish reflects energy from the feed horn. The dish on the receiving end can only receive information; it cannot transmit information. The receiving dish works in the exact opposite way of the transmitter. When a beam hits the curved dish, the parabola shape reflects the radio signal inward onto a particular point, just like a concave mirror focuses light onto a particular point. The curved dish focuses …