Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Fiber optic cables are a key resource for cities looking to better integrate their systems and automate key processes, from meter reading to turning on the street lights. As more cities consider the viability of smart grids and fiberoptics deployment in general, College Station, Texas, sets a prime example of the versatility and value of these initiatives.
According to KBTX, College Station has already invested in over 170 miles of fiber, creating a smart grid that connects its facilities, emergency responders and street lights efficiently. This also provides it opportunities to explore further uses for fiber, such as leasing lines to private companies to implement high speed internet. This latter opportunity is exactly what the city plans to explore next.
"I want to be able to Skype with my kids. I want to be able to Facetime with my grandkids," said city council member James Benham. "I want to be able to stream Netflix. What happens when Netflix starts streaming 1080p content? This wasn't ordinance or law. We didn't spend any money or buy anything, but we did say is that fiber optic and ultra high speed telecommunications is really important to the City of College Station."
As the city plans to attract private businesses to start leasing parts of its unused fiber network, there are additional considerations to be made. Maintaining the quality of the network, continuing to provide high-speed internet access and meeting city infrastructure needs are key, but the city is also considering integrating fiber with all of its new roadway construction efforts. The council is currently taking request for information from businesses interested in furthering its fiber efforts.
Part of optimizing fiber-based smart grids is investing in high-quality fiber media converters. These tools are essential for maintaining quality of service and minimizing latency across long distance cable installations. For fiber-to-the-home installation, media converters are also critical from integrating fiber with older, copper cables.
From fiber to copper integration and serial-to-Ethernet converters, fiber is a critical resource for 21st century cities, and making smart investments today can help local governments move their populace into the modern age of technology with ease while meeting stability and support demands from citizens.
Perle offers a range of cost effective serial-to-Ethernet converters to help meet NERC-CIP compliance for the protection of critical cyberassets in substations. The IOLAN SDS HV/LDC Terminal Server is designed to meet harsh environments associated with Power Substations with attributes such as support for substation AC and DC voltage ranges, extended operating temperatures and meeting emission, immunity and safety approvals associated with substation IT equipment.