How to Protect Your Equipment During Lightning Season

August 24, 2017 at 8:00 AM

 

No matter how lucky you are, the thought of lightning striking your expensive communications equipment can be a scary thought. Depending on your location, the time of year and your proximity to other buildings, the chances of a lightning strike can be higher or lower, but any lightning strike can be debilitating for sensitive electronic equipment. Both direct and indirect strikes can cause extensive damage that includes loss of data, downtime and the cost of replacement.

 

Electromagnetic fields and earth-voltage spikes caused by lightning can also wreak havoc on electronic power and signal circuits. This can damage the Ethernet, coaxial and telephone lines, or anything connected to the circuits. Even entire campuses can experience long-range voltage spikes that can ruin all electronics connected by the above-ground and below-ground cabling systems that run throughout the campus.

 

There’s no single cure-all method, but lightning protectors are an inexpensive way to help protect equipment in the event of a lightning strike. Here are some of the best solutions to give your equipment a fighting chance:

 

 

Coaxial Protectors – These lightning protectors use gas-filled tubes to discharge electrical spikes before they can cause damage. They are used in both wired and wireless networks to protect radios, communications equipment and anything else attached to coaxial cable, which becomes a target for lightning. They feature popular connector types including N, TNC, RP-BNC and F.

 

Low-PIM Coaxial Protectors – Theses are ideal for use with Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS) because of their low-PIM performance of -150dBc. They feature bi-directional protection and there are no gas tubes to replace.

 

Cat5/5e/6 and PoE Protectors – These protectors ground-out and discharge spikes that can permanently blackout security cameras, switches routers and other critical equipment. They are ideal for 10/100/1000 Base-T Ethernet networks. Some models even feature integral PoE injectors that can deliver remote power to access points, access servers, outdoor routers and other Ethernet IP enabled devices.

 

Telephone/DSL/T1 Protectors – They protectors can prevent your POTS or other telephone system from expensive downtime and are perfect for indoor or outdoor installations. These protectors are available in multiple styles including screw terminal 

and RJ11 options.

 

RS232/422/485 Protectors – These are ideal for protecting RS-232, RS-422 and RS-485 lines. They can also save sensors, control lines and AISG lines from lightning’s damaging effects.

 

To see all the products L-com offers to protect your equipment from lightning, click here.

 

Engineers’ Choice

June 15, 2017 at 8:00 AM

 

Our engineers are the hub of innovative ideas that drive our company and we depend on them to have their fingers on the pulse of the industry. So we tapped into our engineering resources to ask what technology we should be blogging about this week. The technology of choice: M12 cables. Here is an inside look at M12 cables, what they are, what they’re good for and why our engineer’s chose them.

 

RJ45 plug connectors are the most widely used connection technology for Ethernet systems, but for Ethernet networks deployed in harsh outdoor or industrial environments, M12 plug connectors are often better suited for many applications. Here are some of the reasons why we think M12 connectors are an attractive option.

 

IP67 or IP68-rated – An IP67 rating means the cable is completely protected from dust and temporary immersion between 12 cm and 1m. A rating of IP68 means the cable is totally protected from dust and long periods of immersion under pressure. Both of these ratings are crucial for cables used in harsh industrial environments.

 

Compact Design – Even though M12 connectors are made to withstand rugged conditions, they still maintain a compact design which is perfect for saving space in often crowded enclosures and cabinets.

 

Reliable Connection – Despite their small size, M12 connectors are very sturdy and deliver a reliable connection even when exposed to shock or vibration.

 

Two Pin Configurations – M12 Ethernet connectors are offered in both 4-pin and 8-pin configurations. Four-pin M12 connectors with D-coding are perfectly suited for fast Ethernet transmission. Eight-pin M12 connectors are usually A-coded and can deliver higher transmission rates such as Gigabit Ethernet. L-com also offers 8-pin, X-coded M12 cables that support Category 6a applications and are rated for 10Gbps speeds.

 

POE – M12 cables and connectors can be used for Power over Ethernet applications. The four-pin connectors can be used for type-1 transmission where supply, voltage and data are transmitted together. Eight-pin configurations can deliver type-2 power with the two spare wire pairs being used to transmit the supply voltage separately.

 

Our complete line of M12 Ethernet cables include X-code, A-code and D-code versions that are IP67/68/69K-rated, high-flex, shielded and resistant to oil, weld splatter, and damaging UV rays.

 

Check out our complete selection of M12 cable assemblies.

 

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