Fibre optic cable is one of the fastest-growing transmission mediums for both new cabling installations and upgrades, including backbone, horizontal, and even desktop applications. Fibre offers a number of advantages over copper.
Fibre provides far greater bandwidth than copper or wireless technologies and has standardised performance up to 10 Gbps. Keep in mind that fiber speeds are dependent on the type of cable used. Single-mode cable offers far greater distance than either 62.5- or 50-micron multimode cable. In addition, fibre optic cable can carry more information with greater fidelity than copper wire.
Low attenuation and greater distance
Because the fibre optic signal is made of light, very little signal loss occurs during transmission, and data can move at higher speeds and greater distances. Fibre does not have the 100m distance limitation of unshielded twisted pair copper (without a booster). Fibre distances can range from 300m to 40 km depending on the style of cable, wavelength, and network. Because fibre signals need less boosting than copper ones do, the cable performs better.
Your data is safe with fibre cable. It doesn’t radiate signals and is extremely difficult to tap. If the cable is tapped, it’s very easy to monitor because the cable leaks light, causing the entire system to fail. If an attempt is made to break the physical security of your fibre system - you’ll know it.
Fibre networks also enable you to put all your electronics and hardware in one central location, instead of having wiring closets with equipment throughout the building.
Immunity and reliability
Fibre provides extremely reliable data transmission. It’s completely immune to many environmental factors that affect copper cable. The core is made of glass, which is an insulator, so no electric current can flow through. It’s immune to electrometric interference and radio-frequency interference (EM/RFI), crosstalk, impedance problems, and more. You can run fibre cable next to industrial equipment without worry. Fibre is also less susceptible to temperature fluctuations than copper and can be submerged in water.
Fibre is lightweight, thin, and more durable than copper cable. Plus, fibre optic cable has pulling specifications that are up to 10 times greater than copper cable’s. Its small size makes it easier to handle and it takes up much less space in cabling ducts. Although fibre is still more difficult to terminate than copper, advancements in connectors are making termination easier. In addition, fibre is actually easier to test than copper cable.
The proliferation and lower costs of media converters are making copper to fibre migration much easier. The converters provide seamless links and enable the use of existing hardware. Fibre can be incorporated into network in planned upgrades.
The cost for fibre cable, components, and hardware is decreasing and is becoming more and more accessible. Fibre costs less to maintain, has less much less downtime, requires less networking hardware, and eliminates the need to recable for higher network performance.
Different Types of Cabling
To read about different types of cabling click here.