Get ready for a ridiculous boost in wireless networking speed. Two camps are competing to deliver wireless components that are at least seven times faster than today’s gigabit (IEEE 802.11ac) routers. By harnessing spectrum in the unlicensed 60GHz frequency band, these devices will be capable of offering more bandwidth than hardwired USB 3.0 connections.
The contest conjures memories of the VHS-Betamax wars, with one exception: One side has been shipping products for more than a year, and the other side isn’t expected to deliver certified products until sometime next year. Although the two technologies could coexist, I think only one will ultimately prevail.
The WirelessHD Consortium, led by chip maker Silicon Image, is the team behind the products selling today. The Wireless Gigabit Alliance (WiGig), led by chip makers Marvell and Wilocity, won’t kick off its certification program until 2014, but that hasn't stopped one manufacturer from shipping an uncertified WiGig device early.
Don’t worry—you didn’t just waste $200 on a new router. In its early stages, 60GHz technology will be present only in point-to-point networks, such as hardware for streaming media from a PC to an HDTV, or wirelessly connecting your laptop to a desktop docking station.
Researchers say they have created fiber cables that can move data at 99.7 percent of the speed of light, all but eliminating the latency plaguing standard fiber technology. There are still data loss problems to be overcome before the cables could be used over long distances, but the research may be an important step toward incredibly low-latency data transmissions.
Although optic fibers transmit information using beams of light, that information doesn't actually go at "light speed." The speed of light, about 300,000 km/s, is the speed light travels in a vacuum. In a medium such as glass, it goes about 30 percent slower, a mere 200,000 km/s.
"[L]ight propagates 31% slower in a silica glass fibre than in vacuum, thus compromising latency," notes a paper published Sunday in Nature Photonics, titled "Towards high-capacity fibre-optic communications at the speed of light in vacuum."
The research team from the University of Southampton in England solved this problem by taking the glass out of the glass fiber. This results in a "hollow-core photonic-bandgap fibre," which is made mostly of air yet still allows light to follow the path of the cable when it twists and turns.
The methods used by the researchers result in data loss of 3.5 dB/km, an impressively low number considering its incredibly low latency. However, that data loss is still too high for long-range communications. For now, these cables won't be used to wire up Internet Service Provider networks or for transatlantic cables.
Ministry Expanding Media Industry - Moyo The Herald THE Ministry of Information, Media and Broadcasting Services has started working on expanding the media industry with priority given to upgrading broadcasting services from analogue to digital...
When you talk to Cisco about energy, you’re reminded of what the nebulous smart grid term actually is. It is, at its core, a network and Cisco, whose networking gear is pervasive on the Internet, wants a big hand in how it gets built.
Cisco yesterday announced new gear and services aimed at the electric utility industry, filling out a suite of products that touches multiple points on the grid. At every step, there’s a piece of networking hardware involved, whether it’s a gateway on poles collecting data from two-way smart meters, or routers at substations.
The idea of the smart grid is that overlaying a digital network onto the electricity grid gives utilities the ability to monitor their assets, such as power lines and transformers, and to deliver power more efficiently and resolve outages quicker. This control network is important to manage the flow of power, particularly as more distributed energy sources come online.
The challenge for utilities is that in many cases they have heavy investments in older network architectures, such as the TDM point-to-point networks. To handle higher bandwidth and get to a more flexible network, many utilities are transitioning to same technology that runs the Internet: IP and Ethernet.
New optical technology paves the way for more efficient ocean-spanning transmissions.
Researchers at AT&T have devised a way to increase the distance that large amounts of data can travel through a fiber-optic connection. The technique should allow 400-gigabit-per-second signals to travel for a distance of 12,000 kilometers—four times the previous distance possible—and it promises faster ocean-crossing transmission without adding more equipment. The feat is like sending 170 HD movies 12,000 kilometers—half-again as far as the distance from San Francisco to Tokyo.
The advance, which is described in terms of the amount of data one wavelength can carry, comes a few months after Japan’s NTT and research partners hit another fiber milestone, demonstrating the transmission of vastly more data—a petabit (1,000 terabits) of data per second—for about 50 kilometers.
The AT&T work uses a novel approach to modulating light and new algorithms to speed up the processing of data carried in that light signal. The NTT work was more radical. It involved a change in the way individual fiber strands are arranged in optical backbones, greatly reducing signal loss, and also exploited additional properties of light—phase and polarization—to carry more data. The NTT work is described in detail here.
The advances are applicable to routers that encode light signals sent over fiber backbones that must efficiently handle traffic for millions of customers over long distances, as opposed to fiber-to-the-home lines that go a short distance within a city or city block. In some parts of the world, fiber backbones still have plenty of capacity, and many have fiber-optic cables that are installed but inactive (“dark fiber” in industry parlance). Still, these advances are needed so that the anticipated surge in data use—projected at 30 to 40 percent a year—can be handled cheaply and efficiently.
“If you don’t want to light up more fiber, which is expensive, this allows you to get much more throughput,” says Muriel Medard, a professor at MIT’s Research Laboratory of Electronics. “This allows you to extend the life of the stuff that’s already there.”
In telecommunications, transmission is the process of sending, propagating and receiving an analog or digital information signal over a physical point-to-point or point-to-multipoint transmission medium, whether wired or wireless.
Multimode Fiber Provides Option for Microwave Data Radio World I found some of my amateur radio friends who regularly use it as a transmission medium within large data infrastructures. As such, there is a lot of information on fiber-optics out there.
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