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Run Ethernet over plastic optical fibre

Posted: 04 Dec 2008     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Ethernet  POF  optical fibre 

Plastic optical fibre (POF) technology offers an attractive alternative to traditional glass optical fibre, as well as copper wire for industrial, office, home and automotive networks. It is low cost, lightweight, easy and safe to install, and EMC immune. However, to become a mainstream alternative to copper cabling in such networks, POF needs to support Ethernet.

POF differs from traditional optical fibre in material and the core/cladding dimensions. The core is the highly refractive centre of the fibre which acts as a "light guide". For standard-telecommunication Single-Mode Fibre (SMF), the core diameter is around 9µm and cladding diameter 125µm. SMF is used in long-haul applications with transmission distances of up to 100 km and does not need a repeater. Multimode Fibre (MMF) uses a core/cladding diameter of typically 50µm/125µm, providing less reach, up to approximately 2 km, due to increased dispersion as a result of the larger diameter core.

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