47 U.S. Code § 702 - Definitions
As used in this chapter, and unless the context otherwise requires—
(1) the term “communications satellite system” refers to a system of communications satellites in space whose purpose is to relay telecommunication information between satellite terminal stations, together with such associated equipment and facilities for tracking, guidance, control, and command functions as are not part of the generalized launching, tracking, control, and command facilities for all space purposes;
(2) the term “satellite terminal station” refers to a complex of communication equipment located on the earth’s surface, operationally connected with one or more terrestrial communication systems, and capable of transmitting telecommunications to or receiving telecommunications from a communications satellite system.
(3) the term “communications satellite” means an earth satellite which is intentionally used to relay telecommunication information;
(4) the term “associated equipment and facilities” refers to facilities other than satellite terminal stations and communications satellites, to be constructed and operated for the primary purpose of a communications satellite system, whether for administration and management, for research and development, or for direct support of space operations;
(5) the term “research and development” refers to the conception, design, and first creation of experimental or prototype operational devices for the operation of a communications satellite system, including the assembly of separate components into a working whole, as distinguished from the term “production,” which relates to the construction of such devices to fixed specifications compatible with repetitive duplication for operational applications; and
(6) the term “telecommunication” means any transmission, emission or reception of signs, signals, writings, images, and sounds or intelligence of any nature by wire, radio, optical, or other electromagnetic systems.