In today’s world of digital technologies, Fibre-to-the-Office remains one of the most effective approaches to manage state of the art technology, cost and scalability requirements, explains Tarek Helmy, regional director, Gulf and Middle East, South and East Africa at Nexans Cabling Solutions.
Today’s digital consumers are rapidly adopting public cloud, social, real-time video, Internet TV, digital workplace, messaging, and collaboration, increasing these workloads across all types of networks. With the advent of Internet of Things, the number of applications running on digital networks, will also keep increasing every year.
A network that is scalable and can continuously sustain high network performance to meet increasing needs, is the basis for a future-proofed solution. It is for this reason that fiber optic is a good medium for structured network cabling. Fibre optic components offer scalable, flexible and sustainable benefits; they have a return on investment protection and life cycle; they require low maintenance and demand simple administration; and consume 70 percent less energy compared to a traditional LAN architecture.
While using fibre optic, the methodology of using Fibre-to-the-Office (FTTO) is a good approach to manage the growing requirements of today’s urban building sprawl.
What makes FTTO so effective? Essentially, it is the approach of laying fibre optic structured cabling, as close to the end points as economically viable. Using FTTO topology together with active switches to provide standard ethernet services to devices via standard copper based RJ45 technology. By terminating the fibre inside the building and much closer to the end points, FTTO helps eliminate the communication room traditionally present on each building floor, as well as bring in a host of other advantages.
Networks built using fibre optics and FTTO switches, intrinsically offer advantages of redundancy. This vastly increases network uptime and elevates the level of business continuity and reduces risks of failure.
With its inherent advantages of reducing capital and operational costs, reduced power consumption, faster implementation and scale-out times, better uptime and business continuity, FTTO is best suited for large scale implementations and roll outs. Some of the sweet spots sectors where it works well and gives impressive return on investments include public administration, education, airports, healthcare, security services, defense, and protected buildings.
List of benefits
- Fibre optic cabling is not affected by electromagnetic interference and has no length restrictions for practical usage.
- A traditional LAN structured cabling installation uses central building distributor and floor level distributors, before connecting into end user ports. With FTTO topology, floor level distributors are no longer necessary.
- By eliminating the need for the floor level distributor, FTTO structured cabling enables much faster roll out times, thereby reducing the cost of network cabling installation.
- FTTO structured cabling uses future-proof fibre optic ensuring long life time. It also supports the European Union’s 2020 sustainability targets.
- In comparison to the floor level distribution rooms, the power consumption by FTTO switches connected to the central building distributor is also much less.
- FTTO topology allow for energy-efficient transmission of Power Over the Ethernet. This is because of the short distance between the RJ45 port on the switch and the end-user device.
- FTTO structured cabling networks, are especially effective in generating redundant network topologies. Redundant network topologies offer higher network uptime, with less business interruption, and therefore better corporate profitability.
Various studies have shown there is a saving in capex costs of 29 percent in favour of FTTO over traditional networks for a project involving 3,600 ports. As the demand on the network increases to 10,000 ports including inbuilt redundancy within the network, the capex saving in favour of FTTO increases to 37 percent over traditional networks. Overall, it can be shown there is an average saving of 30 percent in capex for FTTO over traditional networks.
In the case of time required for project installation, configuration and setup, there is a saving of 54 percent in favour of FTTO over traditional networks for a project involving 3,600 ports. As the demand on the network increases to 10,000 ports with inbuilt redundancy within the network, the saving in installation time in favour of FTTO increases to 56 percent over traditional networks. Overall, it can be shown there is an average saving of 40 percent in installation time for FTTO over traditional networks.
In the case of the cost of power consumption of an installation, the comparison of savings between FTTO over traditional networks are even more significant and dramatic. There is a saving in energy costs of 70 percent in favour of FTTO over traditional networks for a project involving 3,600 ports. As the demand on the network increases to 10,000 ports with inbuilt redundancy within the network, the saving in energy costs, in favour of FTTO is 69 percent over traditional networks. Overall, it can be shown there is an average savings from 30 percent up to 70 percent in power consumption costs for FTTO over traditional networks.
In summary, FTTO offers huge cost benefits emanating from savings from multiple factors, over traditional networks. It is particularly well suited for large, complex, scalable networks, that need rapid updates, that are highly cost sensitive, and require higher levels of inbuilt redundancy.