Draka renames multimode fibers to recognize recent OM4 standardization

SEPTEMBER 16, 2009 -- The high-capacity multimode MaxCap300 and MaxCap550 have been rebranded as MaxCap-OM3 and MaxCap-OM4 to identify with emerging standards.

SEPTEMBER 16, 2009 -- Draka Communications has announced that its high-bandwidth multimode fiber (MMF) products are now rebranded to align with the industry acceptance of OM4 in recent TIA engineering committee decisions. As a result, Draka's MaxCap300 and MaxCap550 are renamed as MaxCap-OM3 and MaxCap-OM4 MMFs.

"Our high-capacity multimode name change is both necessary and beneficial for users as it will eliminate doubts about eligibility for their application in emerging datacom environments," says Gerard Kuyt, product line manager, multimode fiber at Draka Communications. "For next-generation data centers this will reassure decision makers that they have the best fiber for the job, one that conforms to latest industry standards and minimizes investment risks."

OM4 was standardized by the Telecom Industry Association (TIA) in August 2009 (TR42.12). The TIA develops and maintains voluntary telecommunications standards for telecommunications cabling infrastructure in user-owned buildings. Since May 2009, OM4 is also referenced in IEEE 802.3ba 40- and 100-Gbps Ethernet.

"By clarifying our product identification as Draka MaxCap-OM3 and MaxCap-OM4 we remove any doubt for datacom professionals that their deployed fiber infrastructure is state-of-the-art, reliable, and futureproof for the most demanding environments," adds Kuyt.

With a global market share of 25%, Draka is the world's leading manufacturer of multimode fibre volume deliveries, as confirmed by the CRU Group - KMI Research. Higher-grade OM4 multimode fiber is appropriate for applications such as backbone connections in local area networks and data centers. High-bandwidth MMF addresses issues such as adequate power budget, allowing safe margins for extended distances, connector cascades, and incidental bending loss.

Data center (Ethernet) and storage (Fibre Channel) markets are adopting higher data rates (10GbE/8GFC) and migrating to higher capacity (40GbE/100GbE, 16GFC) solutions. OM4 MMF is suitable for 10-Gbps link applications requiring a higher power budget, for example, when more connectors are required in data centers. The fiber is also suitable for 10-Gbps applications requiring longer transmission lengths than those available from OM3, accommodating 40GbE and 100GbE.

Draka says both MaxCap-OM3 and MaxCap-OM4 are a result of further optimizing its patented PCVD fiber production process. Within this process, MaxCap-OM4 is identified as a sub-group with high bandwidth characteristics such as enabling 10 Gbps over 550 m. OM4 fibers are specified with an increased minimum effective modal bandwidth (EMB) of 4,700 MHz.km at 850 nm (compared with 2,000 MHz.km for OM3). For system safety and backward compatibility, extra margins of overfilled launch (OFL) bandwidth specification (minimum 3,500 MHz.km at 850 nm and 500 MHz.km at 1,300 nm) are maintained.

Draka will exhibit at ECOC 2009 in Vienna, Austria, from sept. 21-23, in Booth #320.

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