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What is a Fiber Backbone?

A fibre optic backbone is a link between two different locations that are on the same network. However, what is a fiber backbone and where is it used

The following are examples where a fibre optic cable could link together two separate locations

  1. Linking the main comms room to cabinets on different floors of the same building
  2. Linking the main data cabinet to a smaller zone sub-cabinet (i.e a warehouse or reception)
  3. When there are two buildings of the same tenant to connect
  4. Linking cabinets on the same floor that are in place to keep the localised data cabling links under 90m in distance

Why use fiber backbone?

The main benefit of optical fiber backbone is that it is the most effective means of transmitting data.

Fiber can cover the greatest distances with the most bandwidth for most means of communication. Fiber bandwidth and distance ability mean less cable, fewer repeaters, less power, and less maintenance. For example, 24 links between locations can easily be enclosed in a single fibre optic cable

In addition, the fiber is not affected by electromagnetic radiation interference. Therefore, it makes it possible to transmit information and data with less noise and less disturbance. The fiber is lighter than the copper wires and requires less metallic containment along its route. These advantages open the door to many other benefits that make optical fiber the most logical choice in data transmission. As a result of these benefits, fiber has become a means of transportation for virtually all data, voice, and video communications.

Consistency and durability

Fiber-optic wiring is generally more expensive than copper for single links. This is due to the added requirements of active transmission and receiver hardware. However, it becomes increasingly more cost-effective as additional links are required along the same route

Therefore, more and more businesses are choosing fiber optic backbone networks because of their consistency and durability. If a company wants to link separate services like phone, CCTV, AV, Access Control, and internet connection, fiber is a better option. Copper cabling would require a link per service. However, fibre is all done in a single cable with separate cores. Therefore, as installing can be expensive, The cost is more effective when making the installation easier. When designing a facility or network backbone, it is important to consider both current and future communication needs by preparing for the growing data and bandwidth requirements. This can be done by installing a larger fibre cable and only terminating those that are required. However, as requirements grow, the un-terminated cores "Dark Fibre" can be utilised and terminated

Use of fiber backbone

Fibre optic backbone links should be the standard design in any new build design. This gives the most future proof allowance and headroom for new transmission speeds and connection requirements

Copper backbone links are still commonly used, but usually only in additional works or in small offices rather than larger designs

If you run a large facility, fiber optic cabling will be most suitable for your business. It is perfect for connecting many data cabinet locations within one space as fiber cabling can connect distances that go above standard cablings, such as Category 5e / Cat6 / Cata6a. They can also transmit over greater distances. For example, Om3 can transmit 10 gigabits up to 300m and OM4 450m. However Cat6a, Cat7 and Cat8a are all standardised to a maximum link length of 90m

Examples of facilities that benefit from fiber-optic networks include schools, warehouses, hospitals, offices, and universities. These are generally locations that have multi-data cabinet locations

Fiber Backbone Conclusion

As the requirement for bandwidth quickly increases the ability of the Internet, fiber-optic technology maintains to be able to dramatically increase bandwidth. The new technology will enable Internet providers to offer much more connectivity, from reducing network congestion to on-demand video streaming. Fiber optic cables are an integral part of the building system. Although they are usually installed for enterprise network communications, they are also developed in building management systems and electrical power coordination.

 

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