There are five major components in a satellite system: the programming source, the broadcast center, the satellite, the satellite dish , and the receiver . "Direct broadcast" satellites used for transmission of satellite television signals are generally in geostationary orbit 37,000 km (23,000 mi) above the earth's equator .  The reason for using this orbit is that the satellite circles the Earth at the same rate as the Earth rotates, so the satellite appears at a fixed point in the sky. Thus satellite dishes can be aimed permanently at that point, and don't need a tracking system to turn to follow a moving satellite. A few satellite TV systems use satellites in a Molniya orbit , a highly elliptical orbit with inclination of +/- degrees and orbital period of about twelve hours.
Al-Manar officials reported that as of July 2002, their biggest American commercial advertisers included Pepsi, Coke, Proctor and Gamble, and Western Union.  Other corporate sponsors include the German chocolate Milka, the American washing powder Ariel, Nestle's Nido milk, German Maggie Cubes, Finnish Smeds cheese and butter, French Picon cheese, Austrian Red Bull, the French cigarette company Gauloises, and the German Henkel's Der general detergent.  Following an op-ed that appeared in the Los Angeles Times , Pepsi, Coke, Proctor and Gamble, and Western Union ceased advertising on al-Manar, but the other European companies continue to do so.