There are multiple ways of extending fibre optic links that fall under the topology daisy chain, ring and star. Let’s just look at each of them briefly taking a simple 3-point network having location #A, B & C:
1.Daisy Chain: # Location A – # Location B – # Location C . The optical signals hop from A to B to C. If there is a cable cut between A & B the whole link goes down. If there is a cable cut between B & C then C is cut off from the network.
2. Ring: # Location A – # Location B – # Location C – # Location A . The optical signals hop from A to B to C and then return back to A. If there is a cable cut between A & B , then the communication happens through the path A -C-B. If there is a cable cut between B & C, the communication happens through the path A-B & A-C. So you can see that this is a better option than the daisy chain because for a single break in the link, the communication is not interrupted. However, this requires extra cable ( for the return path) and also managed switches/devices to detect break and switch communication to the available alternative path. Most preferred for critical communication and increasingly being adopted in CCTV surveillance networks communicating on optical fibre backbone.
3. Star: Location #A – Location # B ; Location # A – Location #C. Pretty straightforward..we now have two independent links from Location #A. If there is a cable cut between A & B, then only that link goes down, communication between A & C is not affected and vice versa.
Based on the number of points to be connected and the critical nature of the application, we need to make a technically and commercially feasible choice by picking one or a combo of all the three types.
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