10-Gigabit On Copper Is (Almost) Here

Finneran, Michael
May 2005
Business Communications Review;May2005, Vol. 35 Issue 5, p16
Trade Publication
The article reports on the transmission rates of unshielded twisted pair (UTP) local area network cabling. Since transmission standards for this LAN cabling were defined by the EIA/TIA in the 1980s, there has been an ongoing march to deliver higher and higher transmission rates. Now the IEEE is in the final ratification process for a l0-Gbps UTP interface designated l0G BaseT or IEEE 802.3an. Currently, connecting a l0-Gbps Ethernet interface requires fiber or coaxial cable. Several optical interfaces are defined using both singlemode and multimode fiber and supporting transmission ranges from 65 meters to 40 kilometers. The l0G Base-CX4 coaxial interface uses a type of cable that is rarely found in corporate datacenters; in addition, it requires different tools and terminating techniques, and only goes 15-30 meters. Transmitting a higher data rate over copper involves generating a higher frequency, which results in a weak representation of a highly complex signal that must be read with considerable precision in the presence of significant levels of noise.


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