Featured: Smart city innovation concept- Single-mode fiber (smf) and smart city infratstructure: Network connectivity and data management

Single-Mode Fiber (SMF) and Smart City Infrastructure: Network Connectivity and Data Management

Today 56% of the world’s population lives in cities. That’s 4.4 billion people. By 2050 it’s expected that the urban population will double, pushing the percentage to nearly 70%. Add to that that 80% of global GDP is generated in cities. All this means that we must intelligently manage every aspect of city infrastructure to ensure our cities are livable and sustainable. A vital component of the smart city infrastructure is single-mode fiber (SMF). 

That’s where smart cities come into play. With this staggering population growth, technology must be deployed to manage every aspect of the urban environment to deliver a high quality of life for all residents. 

This article defines single-mode fiber (SMF), examines the smart city infrastructure, and points out how optical fiber cables improve connectivity and data management. It also provides insight into custom fiber optic cable assemblies, wire harnesses, and hybrid cables. 

Callout 1: 4 facts about the need for smart city infrastructure

What Is Single-Mode Fiber (SMF)?

Single-mode fiber optic cable is used for long-distance network connections. It typically has a cable diameter of 7 to 15 microns, allowing only one wavelength of light to be transmitted. This minimizes attenuation due to decreased internal reflections. As a result, the signal can move through the fiber for long distances.

There are four categories of single-mode fiber, with variations introduced as the industry continues to provide ever-innovative solutions. The table below provides the significant differences between the types defined by the International Telecommunications Union’s published standards.

Type Diameter mm Cutoff Wavelength Applications
G.652D 8.6 – 9.5 1260 nm Metro networks
G.654E 11 – 15 1530 nm High bandwidth
G.655E 8 – 11 1450 Long haul systems
G.656 7 – 11 1450 Long haul systems

Single-mode fiber optic cables are ideal for applications within a smart city infrastructure where they must reach across the city’s extensive footprint. 

Callout 2: Single-mode optical connectors isolated on white background- what is single-mode fiber (SMF)? 5 facts

What Is Smart City Infrastructure?

A smart city uses information and communication technology to collect data and then uses that information to manage resources and services to improve community operations. Data is collected via sensors, devices, buildings, and citizens, including the Internet of Things (IoT), to accomplish tasks throughout the community’s footprint. That includes traffic, transportation, utilities, water, waste, police, and other community services. 

That requires high-speed Internet connectivity, wireless connectivity, data centers, cloud-based infrastructure, and cyber security measures. Plus, it’s not once built, forever effective. Instead, it takes continuous monitoring followed by any needed repair and expansion. The entire infrastructure needs to be scalable, resilient, and secure. 

Single-Mode Fiber for Improved Network Connectivity and Data Management

Network connectivity and data management are critical to the smart city infrastructure. It is required to facilitate data exchange between different entities.

The optimum application for single-mode fiber in smart city infrastructure is in high-capacity middle-mile networks. SMF’s high bandwidth and long-distance capabilities are ideal for routing data across the city’s footprint. Multimode fiber is primarily used in data centers and campus network build outs through network cable installations. 

Callout 3: What is smart city infrastructure? 2 facts listed

Custom Fiber Optic Cable Assemblies

A big part of a smart city infrastructure includes data centers and routing within smart buildings. That’s where custom fiber optic cable assemblies come into play. 

A cable assembly is two or more conductors within a single insulating jacket. These assemblies provide the advantages of pre-testing, manufacturing in quantity, and dropping into place in the field. Not only that but compared to field installation, pre-terminated fiber optic cables can save money. 

You can find more information in our article Custom Fiber Optic Cable Assemblies: Cost and Time Advantages

Custom Fiber Optic Wire Harnesses

Fiber optic wire harnesses are also part of the smart city infrastructure. A wire harness is a bundle of separate wires and cables that, while held together, can still be broken out and routed independently. The wire harness bundles the wires and cables using tie wraps, loom tubing, and other sleeving components. The cables and wires range from single conductors to fiber optics, coaxial cables to twisted pairs, and more.

Since the harness is bound together, it provides a safe routing pattern. In addition, it further simplifies the wiring interconnections by delivering an all-in-one integrated drop-in installation across multiple connection points.

For more information, see our article, Cable & Wire Harnesses: Everything You Need to Know.

Callout 4: Optimum application for single-mode fiber in smart city infrastructure is in high-capacity middle-mile networks.

Custom Hybrid Fiber Optic Cables

A hybrid cable is a single cable with multiple fibers, conductors, and connectors. They can contain various AWG-size wires, coaxial and ethernet cables, fiber optics, etc. They are also built with the exact jackets needed, including PVC, Plenum, and LSZH, which are heat, moisture, and UV resistant. Not only that but they are also built with the exact type of shielding needed for each specific installation. Add the required strain reliefs, desired color, logos, and text, and you have a hybrid cable.

For more, see our article Hybrid Cable Customization: Off-the-Shelf Cables Can’t Compete

We Can Meet Your Fiber Optic Custom Cable Smart City Infrastructure Needs

Whether you need single-mode fiber or custom fiber optic cable assemblies and wire harnesses, we’ve got you covered. We have a well-developed process for manufacturing custom fiber optic cable assemblies and wire harnesses. We also have significant experience meeting each application’s and every customer’s needs. 

If your requirements are already specified and ready for a quote for your current projects, we are prepared to meet your deadlines and pricing targets. Our extensive in-house services and advanced manufacturing capabilities are in place to meet your requirements.

But Cables-Unlimited offers much more than state-of-the-art manufacturing – our dedicated team is also known for going to great lengths to meet the needs of our customers, including working round-the-clock to meet tight turnaround time requirements.

Our sales representatives are standing by to assist you with product questions and quotes Monday – Friday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm Eastern. Of course, you can also email us or complete our contact form, and we’ll get right back to you.