The panel surveyed advanced technology being developed for commercial use in the satellite communications field in Europe, Japan, and Russia. All aspects of satellite communications were considered, including fixed, broadcast, mobile, personal communications, navigation, low earth orbit, and small satellites. The focus of the study was on experimental and advanced technology being developed in R&D and demonstration programs rather than on today's production capabilities. The report focuses on commercial satellite technology, and does not review defense-related or other confidential satellite communications capabilities. The NASA/NSF panel concluded that the United States has lost its leading position in many critical satellite communications technologies. Although U.S. industry retains a leading position in today's marketplace for satellite communications systems and services, this position is largely founded on technologies and capabilities developed in the 1960s and 1970s. Because the United States is losing ground with respect to a wide range of technologies and systems that will be key to future communications markets, the market share of the U.S. satellite communications industry is at risk.