TE Connectivity’s extender, powered fiber cable extend PoE to 3 km
The powered fiber cabling system includes a modular hybrid cable with up to 12 SM or MM fibers and 12- or 16-AWG conductors, along with an IP67-sealed extender.
TE Connectivity today announced a Power over Ethernet extension system—including an environmentally rugged PoE Extender and a modular hybrid fiber/copper cable—that supports Power over Ethernet up to 3,000 meters. “This represents an order-of-magnitude improvement in PoE’s reach from its nominal 100 meters, and opens up a new range of applications for PoE equipment such as CATV cameras, WiFi access points, small cells and digital signage,” the company said when announcing the system, which will be available in June. “PoE deployments are no longer dependent on the availability of power nearby,” TE Connectivity continued. “This allows significant network optimizations and, in the case of WiFi access points, minimizes the number of cells that must be deployed to cover an entire area.”
The PoE extender device (pictured) incorporates electrical power management, circuit-protection electronics, and an optical-to-electrical media converter in an environmentally sealed enclosure. When used with TE’s powered fiber cable system, it supports a broad range of applications, the company noted. “Featuring plug-and-play installation, the PoE extender is a simple, unobtrusive way to deploy PoE devices in large buildings or urban or suburban areas,” TE said. The extender handles simple spike protection, as well as electromagnetic interference and lightning protection. TE Connectivity added that the extender meets NEC Class II and SELV standards, and includes DC/DC conversion electronics, which automatically condition electrical voltage to the correct level needed for PoE input to the device under load.
The powered fiber cable system supports what TE describes as a “complete rack-to-device vision for both powering and communicating with devices.” The company likens the cable’s function to that of a “long extension cord.” The cable system includes a hybrid cable (illustrated), the PoE extender interface, cable/fiber management, and power supply.
The modular hybrid cable has been designed for simplified cable field access, TE Connectivity pointed out, through “easy peel”; it can be accessed much more quickly than traditional hybrid cables, the company said. The cable requires no special tools, as one ordinary wire-strip tool can be used to access both the optical fiber and the conductor elements. It uses globally existing, proven, and inexpensive fiber-to-the-home-style flat cable hardware, TE noted, and the cable is available in outdoor and riser/LSZH indoor/outdoor-rated versions.
Ryan Chappell, business development manager for optical cable with TE Connectivity, explained in an interview with cablinginstall.com that the 12- or 16-AWG conductors in the hybrid cable are used exclusively for the delivery of power; they are not twisted pairs intended to carry signal. Cables including the smaller, 16-AWG conductors are available at a lower price and can be used in applications requiring a shorter PoE reach, while cables with the larger, 12-AWG conductors are geared for longer-distance deployments up to 3,000 meters. Additionally, the system’s reach can vary depending upon whether users deploy 802.3af (PoE) or 802.3at (PoE Plus).
Chappell added that within TE Connectivity, the project that began with the ambition to develop a more-efficient hybrid copper/fiber cable, ultimately resulted in this Power over Ethernet extension system. The incorporation of relatively recently developed DC-to-DC conversion technology allowed TE Connectivity to build a complete solution for extending PoE. And with the relative ease-of-use that lets the system function as the aforementioned “long extension cord,” Chappell noted, “You don’t need to be both an electrical engineer and an optics guru” to implement a long-distance Power over Ethernet system.