Communications Power

IEEE 802.3™ Ethernet and PoE Innovation Continues with Launch of New Projects

IEEE announced initiation of three new standards-development projects and an IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA) Industry Connections activity that are all intended to expand the capabilities and relevance of the IEEE 802.3™ “Standard for Ethernet” including two that will have direct impact on power management and PoE. Work is underway to amend the base standard in multiple ways so that it is more useful in emerging application areas, and the new Industry Connections activity will engage global industry in discussion of the next-generation Ethernet Passive Optical Network (NG-EPON).

The first effort is, IEEE P802.3bt "Draft Standard for Ethernet Amendment: Physical Layer and Management Parameters for DTE Power via MDI over 4-Pair" is being developed to address the market need for more robust and efficient Power over Ethernet (PoE) capabilities. Applications such as pan/tilt/zoom security cameras, Internet Protocol (IP) videophones, kiosks, point-of-sale (POS) terminals, thin clients, multi-radio wireless nodes and access points, laptop computers, RFID readers and building management have demonstrated need for more power, and, when completed, the new IEEE 802.3 amendment would be intended to increase the power and efficiency of PoE. More information on development of IEEE P802.3bt can be found here.

Second is, IEEE P802.3bu "Draft Standard for Ethernet Amendment: Physical Layer and Management Parameters for 1-Pair Power over Data Lines" is being developed to extend PoE to data terminal equipment (DTE) via a single twisted pair IEEE 802.3 Ethernet connection. The availability of power on the single-pair data interface would remove the need for separate power wiring for applications in emerging Ethernet markets such as automotive, transportation and industrial automation. More information on development of IEEE P802.3bu can be found here.

In addition, IEEE P802.3br "Draft Standard for Ethernet Amendment Specification and Management Parameters for Interspersing Express Traffic" is being developed to address the market need in emerging IEEE 802.3 Ethernet application areas such as audio/video, automotive, industrial automation and transportation (aircraft, railway and heavy trucking) to cost-effectively converge low-latency and best-effort traffic streams on the same physical connections. Currently, such functionality requires multiple networks with parallel links, but, when completed, IEEE P802.3br would amend the base standard to support interspersed express traffic. More information on development of IEEE P802.3br can be found here.

With more than 1.2 billion ports deployed in 2012 alone1, Ethernet is a technology that impacts day-to-day life globally. Initially developed in order to standardize connectivity among computers, printers, servers and other devices inside a local area network (LAN), the IEEE 802.3 Standard for Ethernet touches a tremendous range of established and emerging technologies, including data-center networks, personal computers, laptops, tablets, smartphones, subscriber access, cellular backhaul, power infrastructure and smart meters, personal medical devices and the Internet of Things, in addition to connected cars.

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