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This paper deals with the design of a digital demultiplexer based on a multirate filter bank. In particular a digital architecture for replacing an analog filter bank composed of six surface acoustic wave (SAW) filters have been developed. This analog structure is used, at present, by Alenia Space Division in the Hot-Bird satellites. An extensive comparison between alternative algorithms for the demultiplexer implementation has been carried out. Moreover different implementations have been compared in terms of the computational complexity and accuracy with respect to the quantization effects. Starting from the simulation results, the obtained architecture has been mapped on six Altera Flex 10 K-100 devices. The final test bed, that includes a complete interface to the Alenia demodulator has been implemented on a four-layer PCB.