Fibre optic transmission increasing plays a major role in the delivery of specialist transmission networks designed for digital and high definition CCTV systems.
Traditionally, fibre use in the LAN would be for linking servers and providing the main link between switches located in wiring closets on each floor of the building.
The growing use of megapixel cameras with the resulting increase in bandwidth can easily be supported by fibre optic cabling and will provide sufficient bandwidth to cope with the future increase in network utilisation.
Typically there are two main types of fibre transmission system these being related to cable diameter. The performance of fibre optic cable works the reverse to that expected for electrical cabling, i.e. the smaller the cable diameter the greater the possible performance that can be delivered.
Multimode fibre is the typical cable that would be seen in the LAN environment able to support gigabit and even 10 GB Ethernet up to distances of 300m. Multimode fibre will utilise 62.5µm or 50µm diameter cable with multiple cores (from four to ninety six cores).
Typically used in the WAN and more often being seen for high capacity server or switch connections, single mode fibre using a core diameter of only 8 to 10µm offers a degree of future proofing as bandwidths compliant with the new IEEE Standard 802.3ba delivering Ethernet speeds of 40Gb and 100Gb. These transmission systems are now being designed for use in the future to increase capacity of the next generation of network switches now coming to market.
Single mode fibre cable tends to be cheaper than multimode, due to its extensive use by the national telecommunication companies where it forms the back bone of the country’s communication network.
However due to the more sophisticated requirements of such customers the end kit tends to be significantly more expensive than office based LAN transmission kit used with multimode fibre.
In the office environment the fibre optic transmission equipment tends to be either low cost unmanaged systems, such as media convertors or be implemented in the shape of managed switch GBICs. This offers the opportunity to monitor the transmission network in real time by a SNMP management software system that most corporate IT departments now operate.