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Stay up to date on the latest in intelligent building solutions, infrastructure, and innovations from Paige Datacom Solutions.
  • Industry News
  • 02.21.2020

Gaining CPR: How a cable spec survives global adoption

Paige’s patented GameChanger Cable™,  the first four-pair datacom cable to perform beyond the 100-meter channel distance for Ethernet data and power (PoE) was recently launched in the United Kingdom and Europe.  To gain acceptance, this cable went through rigorous testing to earn the CE “Conformitè Europëenne” mark, which is a European marking of conformity that indicates that a product complies with the requirements of the applicable European laws. The CE label is legally required to appear on many types of products sold in specific European countries to show that they meet European health, safety and environmental standards.

 

Where cabling that is permanently installed in the building is concerned, the CE mark means that that a product meets the safety standards specified by the European Union Directive 305/2011 Construction Products Regulation, known as CPR.  CPR was announced in the Official Journal of the European Union in 2015, which then became mandatory for cables on July, 2017.  CPR provides unified requirements for reaction to fire for power, control, communications, and optical fiber cables intended for installations in all types of construction works in all EU member states.

UL vs. CE vs. CPR

UL Listed means the product meets the standards of Underwriters Laboratories, a private safety testing organization. There are some key differences between a UL Listing and a CE Mark.  One of the biggest differences is that the UL Listing must be performed by a 3rd-party lab with approved flame and smoke tests.  Another, and probably most importantly, is that cable products used in U.S. construction may not necessarily be required by law to be UL Listed, even though most contractors choose to use UL Listed products in order to avoid potential liability issues, whereas the CE Mark is mandatory by law.

A product that is already UL Listed in the U.S. doesn’t automatically qualify for the CE Mark. If a UL Listed product has also been tested to the European harmonized standards, then it may be eligible for CE certification; however, it still must receive a CE Mark and have a Declaration of Performance certificate available before it can be used in Europe.  And on the flipside, products that carry the CE Mark are not automatically considered to be UL Listed. Some product types with the CE Mark do not have to be third-party certified and are not necessarily compliant with U.S. standards.

The CPR requires the construction products, such as cables, to be assessed against a harmonized standard or have a European Technical Assessment (ETA) before the declaration can be issued and the CE marking affixed. If there are no applicable harmonized standards and the manufacturer has not requested an ETA, then the product cannot be CE marked under the CPR and as a result, cannot be sold or installed in the EU.

Steps to obtaining the CE Mark to comply to the CPR includes: identifying the applicable harmonized European standard (hEN), review the essential characteristics (which can vary depending on the specific products), undertake initial type testing and factor production controls (which might require the involvement of a Notified Body) and finally complete a Declaration of Performance and affix the CE Marking.

One critical thing to remember for both UL Listings and CE Marks is that compliancy can differ from city to city or country to country so it is key to work with the local Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ)

Cracking the code

The GameChanger product certified for the EU to the CPR is coded to the standard “Cca-s1a, d0, a1” So, what does that coding mean?

CPR defines several classes that indicate the impact of cables on the spread of fire, using a series of parameters obtained from the corresponding tests. Refering to Table 1, cables are classified by seven performance classes, running from Aca to Fca, with Aca being the least reactive to fire.  Additional subclasses call out for smoke production, flaming droplets and acidity for cable classes B1ca, B2ca, Cca and Dca, as well as a more stringent, larger scale test using bundled cable.

 

Smoke production is rated on a sliding scale from s1a to s3, where s1 is the most demanding classification and s3 is for products where no performance is declared or which do not comply with the requirements of s1 or s2.

Flaming droplets during combustion is similarly rated from d0 to d2, where d0 is the most demanding and d2 is for products where no performance is declared or which do not comply with the requirements of d0 or d1.

Acidity is also rated on sliding scale from a1 to a3, where a1 is the most demanding criteria and a3 is for products where no performance is declared or which do not comply with the requirements of a1 or a2.

Table 1 CPR Classifications

Class

Test

Reaction to Fire

Additional Criteria

Aca

EN50399 20kW burner

IEC 60332 1kW flame

No reaction

s = smoke emission

 

d = flaming droplets

 

a = acidity

B1ca

EN50399 20kW burner

IEC 60332 1kW flame

Very little reaction

Heat release + flame spread

B2ca

EN50399 20kW burner

IEC 60332 1kW flame

Little reaction

Heat release + less flame spread than Cca

Cca

EN50399 20kW burner

IEC 60332 1kW flame

Reduced reaction

Heat release + flame spread

Dca

EN50399 20kW burner

IEC 60332 1kW flame

Improved reaction

Heat release criteria

Eca

IEC 60332 1kW flame

Basic reaction

Flame spread criteria

None

Fca

IEC 60332 1kW flame

Reacts

Fails class Eca test criteria

None

 

So, let’s break it down for GameChanger’s CE Mark: Cca-s1a,d0,a1. The “Cca” rating meets a reduced flame and fire reaction as well as heat release.  The “s1a” relates to the meeting the most demanding smoke protection. Regarding flame droplets, noted as “d0” for the GameChanger relates to the most demanding droplet reduction.  And finally, “a1” for acidity also comes under the most demanding criteria.  In short, GameChanger cable meets the highest performing CPR rating to earn its premier CE Mark.

  • Announcements
  • 02.19.2020

JCI Named Game Changing Integrator of the Year

We at Paige recently had the honor of recognizing an esteemed client, Johnson Controls (JCI), with the 2019 Game Changing Integrator of the Year Award.

The award was presented to Hank Monaco, Director of Marketing and Tony Mucci, Director of Product Management. It recognizes Johnson Controls for having demonstrated, through their use of GameChanger Cable, how making smart technical choices can result in significant cost savings and help them achieve their goal of providing the best solution for their customers.

As Hank Monaco stated in his post on LinkedIn – “Powering our customers’ mission and making their lives that much easier is a shared goal of Johnson Controls and Paige DataCom Solutions. We were thrilled to be recognized as their Game Changing Integrator of the Year for 2019, and can’t wait to see what 2020 brings!”

JCI was an early adopter of GameChanger achieving impressive results in smaller installations as early as 2018, in 2019 JCI began to leverage GameChanger in major projects. One example is an application where JCI deployed over a quarter million feet of GameChanger for a large logistics company.

Since 1885 and with a global team of 105,000 experts in more than 150 countries,  Johnson Controls transforms environments where people live, work, learn and play, from optimizing building performance to improving safety and enhancing comfort in industries such as healthcare, education, data centers and manufacturing.

  • Products & Innovation
  • 01.20.2020

Smart Cable for Smart Buildings

The terms “smart” or “intelligent” are synonymous when referring to designing today and tomorrow’s commercial buildings.  A smart or intelligent building incorporates ICT-based systems, services and technology to reduce operating costs, optimally utilize space, and improve energy efficiency at all stages of its life cycle.  And smart buildings are one of the fastest growing segments in the enterprise market.  In fact, it has been reported by market researchers that the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) for smart component solutions and services will grow 11-15% in the next four years. 

 

Smart buildings require an intelligent infrastructure that can support an integrated network of building systems.  The cabling infrastructure becomes the foundation of a smart building.  But a smart building is only as smart as its infrastructure design and component choices. And because of the diversity of applications and their requirements and locations, network designers are looking at unique solutions, such as Paige’s long-distance GameChanger Cable™ to reach these devices.

 

Smart Applications

For over 30 years the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) industry has been designing and installing the cabling infrastructure for voice and data applications.  Data and voice structured cabling easily became standardized to address generic requirements.  Most installations were cookie-cutter designs as the cable was pulled from the telecom room (TR) to work area outlets located 15” above the finished floor for connection to computers and phones.

 

Standards were put into place so that manufacturers’ cable and connectivity could be interchangeable, versus previous proprietary systems. IEEE-802.3 deemed that due to bandwidth requirements along with allowing backwards compatibility, that four-pair copper cable be limited to 100 meters (m) from the active equipment. Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) introduced power to be run alongside data within the same cable, which reduced the number of cables to the work areas, but the distance to the device remained limited to the same 100-meter rule.

 

IP cameras over twisted pair and fiber opened the floodgates for additional devices to jump on the network through the Ethernet protocol.  More network applications became IP-enabled, including wireless access points, access control, lighting and building automation systems.  The good news is that these applications when integrated with each other create a smart building which leads to energy efficiency, resulting in a better environment for the users and cost savings for the building owners. 

 

The challenge of designing the cabling infrastructure for an intelligent building is that the applications may have their own unique cabling and layout.  For example, some LED lighting fixtures are connected directly with a point-to-point copper cable while others are connected to a node and then daisy chained to the devices.   Other challenges are that these devices are not terminated to a work area outlet, but to a service outlet which could be in the ceiling or even waist height, and many located outside the 100m limit.  But where there are challenges, there are solutions.

 

Smart Standards

Standard bodies such as ISO, TIA and BICSI are addressing the unique requirements for structured cabling to help the designers, consultants and contractors install systems to build a reliable network.  ISO/IEC 11801-6:2017 is the international standard that specifies generic cabling within premises comprising of a single or multiple buildings on a campus and is in sync with the North American TIA standards from ANSI (American National Standards Institute). ANSI/TIA published TIA-862-B-2016 Structured Cabling Infrastructure Standard for Intelligent Building Systems to provide minimum requirements for intelligent building cabling to support applications that use Ethernet communication, as well as accommodate other protocols that are typically used between devices. Specific content in the TIA standard provides guidelines for cabling types, topology, design and installation best practices and test procedures.  However, this standard follows the other previous TIA cabling standards to deploy applications over the same generic structured cabling topology used for telecommunications applications.  The main differences are terminology, such as equipment outlet versus telecom outlet, and distributor rooms to denote the location of termination equipment, which might not always be in a TR.  Also, there are exceptions for coverage area topologies, such as a direct connection, as discussed in their Annex C.  But, once again, the copper twisted pair cable is limited to 100 meters.

 

BICSI delves deeper with their published ANSI/BICSI-007-2017 standard, Information Communication Technology Design and Implementation Practices for Intelligent Buildings and Premises.  This standard provides recommendations for design and implementation of the cabling system, as well as specific building system applications for any size building or premise. The BICSI standards leverages the requirements by TIA and ISO but goes more granular into the best practices for planning spaces, topology and media selection for the additional building applications.  In addition, the BICSI standard recognizes that in many instances, the cabling infrastructure and cabling selection may vary. According to the BICSI-007 standard, “Layout and selection of horizontal cabling should be planned to incorporate the deployment of numerous building systems that may utilize an IP network” In addition, BICSI-007 recognizes that “Some building systems may require cabling other than balanced twisted-pair or optical fiber because of system and application architecture or manufacturer requirements.  Horizontal cabling should be planned to accommodate future equipment needs, which includes transitioning from proprietary systems to IP-based structured cabling, increased system bandwidth requirements, and the need to provide or increase power supplied through communications media. Primary decisions for cabling type are often based on manufacturer requirements, signal type, distance and location, power requirement, and longevity of building occupancy.”   Currently BICSI looks at all options and is reviewing longer-distance copper cable options such as the GameChanger.

 

Smart Choices: Thinking out of the box

Since it’s a fact that the building applications out outside of the realm of computers and phones and now encompass wireless access points, security cameras and access control, to name a few, the distance will often be located well outside the 100m limits from the switch or cross connections.  Some designers consider a  zone cabling layout (which is a horizontal connection point  between the telecom room and the device), but even that alternative is limited to 100 meters. The answer for smart contractors and designers is to implement the long-distance GameChanger cable from Paige Datacom for both data and power.   

 

Often it pays (or saves) to exceed the standards. Many distances for intelligent building devices from the active equipment are exceeded by application-based cabling and requirements unique to the specific system. The patented GameChanger cable more than doubles the distance of Category 6 or Category 6A (shielded, unshielded or outside plant) out to 260 meters (850 feet).  And in keeping with best practices, as recommended by the BICSI standards which states, “Horizontal cabling for intelligent building systems should be tested as part of the building’s and premise’s structured cabling solution,” the GameChanger cable can be tested with most industry field testers.  Check out more information on testing the GameChanger: 

 

As the intelligent building systems expand and the Internet of Things (IoT) continue to explode, more devices will require network connectivity.  In-the-know designers and installers will think outside of the box in selecting the appropriate cabling infrastructure to specifically address the application requirements and endpoints.  To see how GameChanger is the smart choice for intelligent buildings, check out our resources and our white paper

  • Products & Innovation
  • 12.18.2019

Scoring Big With GameChanger: Meeting stadium cabling challenges

‘Tis the season for sports fans to focus on football playoffs, bowl games and championships. High on their list are game tickets, travel plans and hopeful celebrations. Far from their minds are the intricacies on how the games are delivered, either in person or through media (either via the Internet or on live TV). Fans don’t care, as long as the network works. Rest assured that the technology team at Hard Rock Stadium, in Miami, Florida -- the site of the Super Bowl on February 2, 2020 -- is testing all their network equipment and cabling infrastructure to assure system reliability for the more than 65,000 fans headed to the stadium and the more than 100 million, anticipating to watch the broadcast.

For those of us in the information and communications technology (ICT) business, it’s job priority #1 to make sure the network works. There are many challenges to designing and installing a reliable network cable plant in a stadium environment. Think about the many IP applications found in that environment – from digital A/V such as scoreboards and displays to IP security cameras, access control, LED lighting and all forms of data communications – digital antenna systems, Wi-Fi and even hard-wired computers and phones for rotating television affiliate stations and all their sports reporters. What would happen if in the middle of the Super Bowl, the network failed? The blame would most likely fall on the IT department, who would then turn to the the cable and connectivity provider.

Also, consider the size of the venue which includes thousands of seats, concession stands and of course, the heart of the game and focal point -- the field, which is 100 yards long and 53 yards wide with the two 10-yard endzones totaling a minimum of at least 55,000 square feet. Imagine running communications cable to devices on and off the field and figuring out methods to extend network cable past the standard 100-meter limit (i.e. as a reference the 100-yard length equals 300 feet and note that the maximum copper cable channel distances are limited 328 feet). Clearly, stadiums require long-distance runs and there are varying solutions for this scenario.

In addition, most new stadiums are multi-purpose – not just for one sporting event but for many diverse venues such as concerts, baseball, ice hockey or tennis. Careful planning goes into cable type, termination points and cross connections, such as the location of the telecom rooms and enclosures in relation to device requirements and flexibility to adapt.

Cost-effective Winning Solution

The diverse IP applications now require both data and Power over Ethernet (PoE) over a reliable low-voltage network. When it comes to designing the cabling infrastructure in stadiums, one of the biggest factors is the extended distances between the network switch and the device location. With all challenges, there are solutions and the decision comes down to, what’s most reliable and cost-effective?

The GameChanger™ long-reach cable has proven itself a winner in wide-ranging areas such as large campuses, airports, and of course, stadiums. GameChanger can provide up to 90W (Type 4 PoE) of power with 10 Mb/s up to 260m (850 feet) and 1 Gb/s up to 200m (656 feet) – twice the distance of the maximum standards’ defined channel length. In addition, GameChanger is a cost-effective solution. Recently, a third-party consultant compared GameChanger to a hybrid fiber solution and a typical Category 6 cable with extenders, in a 860,000-square-foot facility to provide data and power to 106 IP cameras. The longest cable run was 850 feet and the highest bandwidth for the video stream was 20 Mb/s. The options and cost comparison of the cable, connectivity and miscellaneous active components to provide the data and PoE from the switch to the devices included:

  • Hybrid fiber/copper system with power supplied, fiber connectors, repeaters and media converters: $126,570
  • Category 6 cable with repeaters/extenders: $104,525
  • GameChanger cable including surge protection: $22,305

Check out the details of this case study online here.


More Than Just for Football

 Most major stadiums being built or going through renovations to address burgeoning IP applications, specifically advanced digital A/V, also need to be flexible. Whereas a stadium hosting a major football game one week, may need to convert to multiple tennis courts the next.

“Converting a large football stadium to a tennis court, is a whole different ball game,” states David Coleman, Senior Vice President, Business Development of Paige Datacom, who is often faced with providing cabling solutions to many different facilities and environments. “You have to take into account the many factors of reconfiguration when changing the venue, which most likely includes different seating formations, as well as the different flooring surfaces and layouts,” describes Coleman. “Ultimately, when these changes are made, so are IP device locations. Therefore, the infrastructure, including the cable and pathways, needs to readily adapt,” he explains.

For a recent stadium conversion, the location of the IP cameras from a football field to tennis courts needed to be redesigned and the contractor was faced with changing the cabling and connectivity layout. Originally the contractor had looked at using extenders on the copper cable, but it meant that the termination equipment would be located under the 50-yard line. “That just wasn’t going to fly, because it meant pulling up the 50-yard line which would be damaging and costly to replace,” explains Coleman. “After looking at the options and showing him the GameChanger, he specified this cable as the obvious solution because of its extended distance capability and practical budget,” he adds. With a flexible and reliable infrastructure and cabling options, such as GameChanger, any application can be added to the network at any point by adding a simple connection to the switch.


--

This blog post was written by Carol Oliver, RCDD, DCDC, ESS, BICSI President-Elect (2020-2022), President (2022-2024)
For more about Carol Everett Oliver, visit: www.ceocomm.com

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  • Industry News
  • 12.04.2019

How Airports Are Going the Distance with Data and Video

When you think of airports, you think of big, sprawling spaces, including parking garages and terminals. It’s a large, bustling infrastructure filled with retail stores, jetways, baggage-handling facilities and boarding areas. Typically, cabling is traversing this vast interior, supporting the vital information displays that travelers depend on - and of course, an extensive network of security cameras and equipment.

Making the necessary and critical cable connections in these large airport spaces has always been cumbersome and expensive. And then along came a gamechanger, if you will.


Airports across the country have started deploying Paige’s GameChanger™ Cable, successfully reducing the need for IDF’s (Intermediate Distribution Frame), resulting in an average savings of $107,000, while eliminating potential points of failure.

The patented GameChanger Cable may look like and install like standard Cat6, but it can run twice as far. Underwriters Laboratories (UL) evaluated it and verified the claim that it delivers 1 Gbps performance and POE+ over 200 meters. See the report from UL here.

With the recent surge of interest in adopting GameChanger Cable in airports, Kristin Shaw of Airport Improvement magazine interviewed David Coleman Executive VP of Paige at the Airport Consultants Council Annual Conference. Watch the video interview here:


For more information on Airports and how to successfully meet their unique communications and cabling requirements, you are also invited to read our Airport White Paper – “Cabling the Friendly Skies

  • Industry News
  • 11.12.2019

The Heat is On: GameChanger Elevated to Meet High-Power PoE at Longer Distances

It’s been a year since high-power PoE was defined and ratified by IEEE 802.3bt. So, what has changed in the low-voltage industry and what are the challenges for system designers and contractors when selecting and installing cables for high data and high power? High-power PoE, more commonly known as Type 3 and Type 4, utilize all four pairs of a twisted-pair cable, hence IEEE 802.3bt refers to this as four-pair PoE. Type 3 can provide up to 60W of DC power from the source to a typical maximum of 51W to the device and Type 4 provides up to 100W from the source to up to 71W at each port.

Overview of Power Types by IEEE Standards:

NomenclatureStandardMin Power at PSE Output Max Power at PD InputNo of PairsMax Current per Pair
PoE (Type 1)IEEE 802.3af-2003 15.4 W13.0 W2-pairs350 mA
PoE+ (Type 2)IEEE 802.3at-200930.0 W25.5 W2-pairs600 mA
4-pair High PoE (Type 3)IEEE P802.3bt-2018 60.0 W51.0 W 4-pairs600 mA
4-pair High PoE (Type 4)IEEE P802.3bt-201890.0 W71.3 W4-pairs960 mA


The good news is that more devices, such as digital displays, laptops, televisions, access points and advanced IP cameras, can be powered through the network cable versus having to connect with other cables and to an AC outlet. Think of the freedom. Think of the cost savings. So, what’s the downside?

Turning up the heat

Category cables can power the PoE-enabled device as long as there is sufficient wattage at the source (i.e. a powered switch) to power the unit all the way till the end of the cable run and assure that the voltage has not exceeded the specified voltage drop. The voltage drop is affected by the end device requirement (typically 48V-57V), cable construction based on individual specifications and distance of the run. To calculate the voltage drop (V), multiply the current or amps (A) by the cable ohm resistance (W) which can vary between cable types.

With higher power going through the cable on all four pairs, the identified inhibitors are heat build-up within the cable and the distance limitations. It’s still classified as “low-voltage” so be assured your cable won’t melt or burn, but be concerned that the internal temperature rise can result in increased insertion loss which decreases cable efficiency and affects the entire cabling system.

There are standards and codes to help with the design and selection of the proper cable for safety and performance -- NEC NFPA-70 (2017), TIA-TSB-184-A and TIA-569-D-2. Note that TIA and NEC differ in their maximum bundle sizes. NEC’s focus is safety and the 2017 code provides an ampacity chart (Table 725.144) for up to 192 cables, based on the bundle size, maximum current (A) per conductor, AWG size and cable temperature rating. TIA is concerned with assuring the data and power arrive safely to the powered device and identifies the contributing factors as the current (A) per pair, cable category and number of cables in the bundle (not to exceed 100). TIA provides recommended mitigation techniques and best installation practices to include: reducing the bundle size (manufacturers’ recommendation is not to exceed 24); spreading the cable out within the pathway (such as open cable tray) to provide air circulation; selecting a cable with a larger conductor size (i.e. 22 AWG versus 23 or 24 AWG); and, adhering to the manufacturers’ specifications for ambient and installed temperature ratings.

Extending the distances

Since the dawn of category cable history, dating back to 1983, IEEE 802.3 defined the distance limitation of a four-pair copper cable at 100 meters (which includes the patch cords on both ends). Today this is an age-old dilemma for which many can’t figure out how this rule came into existence or why it still exists. One hundred meters was a convenient length due to legacy specifications for data transmission (10Base-T and 100Base-TX) and could be backwards compatible. The longer the run, the more the signal degraded and the problem was presumed to get worse at higher bandwidths.

For power, the voltage drop and the resistance of the copper affects the length of the copper distance. Basically, voltage drop depends on the power transmission strength sent at the powered source and the gauge of the copper cable.

The restricted reach of 100 meters can severely limit the viable locations where end users can operate a remote IP-enabled device. Most devices requiring the high power PoE extend beyond the 100-meter limitations – think wayfinding signage in an airport, or scoreboards at a stadium, or security cameras in a parking lot.

Existing alternatives to extending the reach include running a hybrid coper/fiber cable with media converters and transceivers (which will require AC power), or installing extenders or repeaters for the copper cable. These options will add cost, as well as more points of failure. For more information, check out our previous blog.

Change the rules by changing the game

It’s a fact that the signal can degrade due to external and internal noise, but with the development of newer and better manufactured cables, there is a more cost-effective and reliable option. The solution is the GameChanger from Paige Electric.

The patented GameChanger cable supports all four types of PoE out to almost 40% farther than the standard 100-meter limitation. Power is carried over the larger 22 AWG conductors and the distance is only limited by the data bandwidth and the application -- 10/100BASE-T (10/100 Mb/s) out to 260 meters (850 feet); and 1000BASE-T (1 Gb/s) out to 200 meters (656 feet).

GameChanger greatly reduces any voltage drop concerns with proven 25%-40% less voltage drop than other typical category cables due to its excellent resistance rating. See the voltage drop chart on Paige’s website.

These cables are designed for all environments, meeting all codes – riser, plenum and outside plant – and are available in unshielded or shielded. In addition, they carry a UL listing. There’s no trick as these cables install and terminate like a traditional category cables and can be certified by most major field test equipment.

Why play by the rules, when you can change the game?


This blog post was written by Carol Oliver, RCDD, DCDC, ESS, BICSI President-Elect (2020-2021)
For more about Carol Everett Oliver, visit: www.ceocomm.com

  • Announcements
  • 10.22.2019

Industry Award Winner GameChanger Cable Granted Patent

On October 22, 2019, Paige Datacom’s patent-pending GameChanger Cable™ is pending no more. This innovative cable, which won recognition as a Cabling Installation and Maintenance (CI&M) platinum award-winning product, secured its validated patent by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). This patent ends the three-year quest to become the first four-pair datacom cable to perform beyond the 100-meter channel distance for Ethernet data and power (PoE).

This patent covers all three constructions of the GameChanger cable – riser, plenum and outside plant (OSP) and is available in shielded or unshielded. U.S. Patent No. 10,453,589 protects Paige Electric Company, and it’s DataCom Division, as the sole manufacturer to produce and market a twisted-pair cable that supports both data and PoE applications to extended distances, depending on the application, source and voltage levels.

The Ethernet standard, IEEE 802.3, which originally defined the copper cabling channel distance to 100 meters from the switch to the work station outlet, was specifically applied to computer and telephone applications. As IP networks have evolved to deliver data and PoE to security cameras, wireless access points and access control systems, infrastructure design has been challenged to stay within the distance limitations and rigors of the device locations.

Currently there are two different application specifications covered in this patent: 1) 10/100BASE-T (10/100 Mb/s) out to 260 meters (850 feet); and, 2) 1000BASE-T (1 Gb/s) out to 200 meters (656 feet). Before the GameChanger cable was developed, alternative methods to reaching extended distances included adding intermediate telecom rooms (or IDFs) and/or telecom enclosures. Other methods incorporate repeaters along the copper cabling system or installing a hybrid copper/optical fiber cable, which could send the data over the fiber and the power over the copper strands, but requires active media converters on the device end. Significant cost savings are being realized with the GameChanger by reducing intermediate cross connections and IDFs. Also, active components such as repeaters, transceivers or converters can be eliminated, which add to the system cost and complexity of the cable run with an additional point of failure.

The GameChanger cable supports all four types of PoE – from Type 1 which provides 15W from the powered source equipment (PSE) over two pairs all the way up to Type 4, which provides 90W from PSE through all four pairs. “By optimizing gauge size, twisting designs and material choices we’ve been able to make big strides in how far we can deliver data and power over Ethernet,” states David Coleman, Vice President of Business Development for Paige. “In the past, cabling has been developed first with Ethernet systems designed around the cabling. Paige has taken the reverse approach and developed a cabling system with Ethernet specifically in mind to maximize transmission distances,” adds Andy Pluister, Vice President of Engineering.

All major test equipment manufacturers have updated the software in their handheld testers to accept GameChanger’s distance and applications. With all these attributes coupled with global recognition through the this new patent, GameChanger cable lives up to its name in the ICT industry as a true infrastructure game changer.


This blog post was written by Carol Oliver, RCDD, DCDC, ESS, BICSI President-Elect (2020-2021)
For more about Carol Everett Oliver, visit: www.ceocomm.com

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