We discuss the following topics in this blog:
- Industry 4.0, commonly known as Fourth Industrial Revolution.
- What is Private LTE?
- What are the Benefits of Using Private LTE?
- How Can Private LTE Give Enterprise a Competitive Edge?
In addition to these topics, we shall also be answering the following FAQs:
- What is WiFi?
- What is an Optical Fibre Cable?
About Industry 4.0
Industry 4.0, commonly known as Fourth Industrial Revolution, leveraging Cyber-physical systems, IoT, Analytics, AI with Automation, and Intelligence with Robotics in Manufacturing as well as newer applications in Industrial/Enterprise settings have enabled a key technology – Private LTE, 3G/4G and eventually 5G solutions for enterprise connectivity. Generally, traditional wireless networks are not capable of handling the bandwidth, latency, security and reliability requirements of operationally intensive environments. Private LTE is a standards-based LTE network scaled down to fit the needs of entities/enterprises.
What is Private LTE?
Enterprises are and is being challenged when large amounts of data are transferred and the cost of high data-transfer volume can be stressful in public LTE networks. This is when private LTE can be a better choice. Private LTE generally comprises of local cellular network that includes cell sites and core network servers dedicated to supporting the connectivity of a specific organization’s requirements independent of the cellular networks of service providers. Private LTE can be deployed anywhere, including areas beyond the reach of public carriers, and can keep data on-site for security reasons. And private LTE can be optimized to handle traffic types with specific requirements. For example, real-time IoT applications can be guaranteed extremely low latency for immediate response.
What are the Benefits of Using Private LTE?
Private LTE ensures guaranteed and secure connectivity and supports a wide range of applications – ranging from push-to-talk (PTT) group communications and real-time video delivery to wireless control and automation in industrial environments, given the authority over wireless coverage and capacity. Organizations are making sizeable investments in private LTE networks across the critical communications and industrial IoT (Internet of Things) domains – including public safety agencies, militaries, utilities, oil & gas companies, mining groups, railway & port operators, manufacturers and industrial giants.
What can an Enterprise do with a Private LTE Network?
- Build a more agile business that can keep pace with shifting demand
- Accelerate the digital transformation
- Unlock new opportunities with the Internet of Things (IoT)
- Provide reliable connectivity for the people, machines and sensors
How Can Private LTE Give Enterprise a Competitive Edge?
Private LTE networks are game-changing technologies that provide maximum mobile coverage and ubiquitous connectivity – inside buildings, in high-traffic venues (stadiums, theatres) and in environments such as hospitals, corporate and educational campus facilities. Enterprise using traditional Wi-Fi connectivity have come under hacking attempts and are vulnerable to invasion threats more than cellular networks like LTE. Big organisations should have an increased empathy towards private LTE networks because they offer a more secure, scalable and resilient solution.
Think of it like this: A port terminal operator wants to take advantage of smart port concepts by providing scalable, modular network solutions that increase operating efficiency, improve employee safety, and enhance its competitive edge. What can the operator to do in this situation? It turns to a business-critical private LTE network to meet these challenges. The customizable network will ensure full coverage to every corner of the terminal, prioritize data traffic among applications, deliver reliable voice/video communication, enable innovative augmented-reality applications to handle containers, and provide low latency in general. As a result, ports that don’t use this smart approach to boost productivity and efficiency risk falling behind their industry competitors.
What is WiFi?
Put simply, WiFi is a technology that uses radio waves to create a wireless network through which devices like mobile phones, computers, printers, etc., connect to the internet. A wireless router is needed to establish a WiFi hotspot that people in its vicinity may use to access internet services. You’re sure to have encountered such a WiFi hotspot in houses, offices, restaurants, etc.
To get a little more technical, WiFi works by enabling a Wireless Local Area Network or WLAN that allows devices connected to it to exchange signals with the internet via a router. The frequencies of these signals are either 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz bandwidths. These frequencies are much higher than those transmitted to or by radios, mobile phones, and televisions since WiFi signals need to carry significantly higher amounts of data. The networking standards are variants of 802.11, of which there are several (802.11a, 802.11b, 801.11g, etc.).
What is an Optical Fibre Cable?
An optical fibre cable is a cable type that has a few to hundreds of optical fibres bundled together within a protective plastic coating. They help carry digital data in the form of light pulses across large distances at faster speeds. For this, they need to be installed or deployed either underground or aerially. Standalone fibres cannot be buried or hanged so fibres are bunched together as cables for the transmission of data.
This is done to protect the fibre from stress, moisture, temperature changes and other externalities. There are three main components of a optical fibre cable, core (It carries the light and is made of pure silicon dioxide (SiO2) with dopants such as germania, phosphorous pentoxide, or alumina to raise the refractive index; Typical glass cores range from as small as 3.7um up to 200um), Cladding (Cladding surrounds the core and has a lower refractive index than the core, it is also made from the same material as the core; 1% refractive index difference is maintained between the core and cladding; Two commonly used diameters are 125µm and 140µm) and Coating (Protective layer that absorbs shocks, physical damage and moisture; The outside diameter of the coating is typically either 250µm or 500µm; Commonly used material for coatings are acrylate,Silicone, carbon, and polyimide).
An optical fibre cable is made up of the following components: Optical fibres – ranging from one to many. Buffer tubes (with different settings), for protection and cushioning of the fibre. Water protection in the tubes – wet or dry. A central strength member (CSM) is the backbone of all cables. Armoured tapes for stranding to bunch the buffer tubes and strength members together. Sheathing or final covering to provide further protection.
The five main reasons that make this technology innovation disruptive are fast communication speed, infinite bandwidth & capacity, low interference, high tensile strength and secure communication. The major usescases of optical fibre cables include intenet connectivity, computer networking, surgery & dentistry, automotive industry, telephony, lighting & decorations, mechanical inspections, cable television, military applications and space.