What can we expect from optical networks?

10th January 2018
Posted By : Alice Matthews
What can we expect from optical networks?

The public debate on the fibre optics roll out in Germany is strongly influenced by politics and the media. In a market that is developing so rapidly, the experts also need a forum to discuss their experiences. The fibre optics symposium held at LASER COMPONENTS provided an opportunity for this kind of exchange. On 7th December 2017, about 40 experts from different industries met at the company’s HQ in Olching.

The agenda was very diverse, covering the legal framework, FTTH roll out in buildings, and the current developments of cables and connectors. “The demand for bandwidth is increasing rapidly,” stated Dr. Andreas Hornsteiner, Head of the business unit fibre optics at LASER COMPONENTS, who hosted the event. “Current forecasts expect that the amount of mobile data is going to grow by a factor of seven within the next four years – and that’s just one segment of the market. Only optical networks provide the necessary speed to transmit these volumes. At the same time, we have to keep an eye on future technologies, such as autonomous driving.”

Deutsche Telekom is an important player in the roll out of broadband networks – from the main backbone to installation in buildings. As a principle, every newly built residential or commercial area is equipped with FTTH networks. Therefore, the corporation has gained valuable experience in the practical issues of everyday implementation, and its presentation met with great interest.

Other lectures dealt with more detailed questions, such as the latest developments in fibre optic cabling for data centres. The attendees were very impressed to receive a glimpse at the near future: The first manufacturers are currently working on dirt-repellent fibre endings, which would eliminate one of the main sources for errors in passive optical networks.

With his abstract about 'fibre optics and infrastructure surveillance', LASER COMPONENTS expert Falk Wagner proved that optical fibres can be used for more than just data transmission. Using so-called optical test units (OTUs), they may also be employed to monitor critical infrastructures such as power grids or traffic networks. For more complex tasks, several OTUs can be combined into one system.

At the end of a busy day with numerous presentations and lively discussions, all participants were satisfied with the results of the symposium.


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