IEEE reaches agreement on Ethernet in the First Mile

10 January 2003 -- The IEEE 802.3ah Task Force has reached consensus on critical issues for point-to-point copper and point-to-multipoint optical networks, enabling progress in the Ethernet in the First Mile standardisation process.

10 January 2003 -- At a meeting in Vancouver, the IEEE 802.3ah Task Force reached consensus on critical issues for point-to-point copper and point-to-multipoint optical networks, enabling progress in the Ethernet in the First Mile (EFM) standardisation process.

An agreement was reached to adopt the G.SHDSL proposal as the copper specification to provide an Ethernet solution that would address local-loop lengths of 2700m. An encapsulation mechanism for the PHY based on 64b/65B was also adopted. Significant progress was also reported for EFM over fibre.

The task force has adopted specifications for the point-to-multipoint (or EPON) optical transceivers, which will enable the EFM components to be manufactured at significantly less cost than their APON rivals.

As a result, the Task Force aimed to circulate an updated draft of the IEEE P802.3ah document as draft 1.3 following the conclusion of the meeting. The Ethernet in the First Mile Alliance, which is the marketing group charged with promoting the technology, described the accord as a major milestone for first-mile copper and optical Ethernet.

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