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What is FTTH, FTTX in Optical Fiber Communication Network?


FTTH is short for Fiber to the Home, which is a transmission mode of optical fiber communication. As the name suggests, it directly connects optical fiber to the user terminal. FTTH is an access method in FTTX, so what is FTTX?


FTTX is a general term for various application types of broadband optical access networks, "X" has a variety of variants, such as fiber-to-the-building (FTTB), fiber-to-the-handover box (FTTCab), fiber-to-desktop (FTTD), fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP), fiber-to-user (FTTu) and so on.


FTTX Terminology


FTTH(Fiber to the Home)

FTTB (Fiber to the Building)

FTTO (Fiber to the Office)

FTTC (Fiber to the Curb)

ODN (Optical Distribution Network)

OLT (Optical Line Terminal)

ONU (Optical Network Unit)

PON (Passive Optical Network)

EPON (Ethernet Passive Optical Network)

GPON (Gigabit-capable Passive Optical Network)

NT (Network Terminator)

ONT (Optical Network Terminator)

P2MP (Point to Multipoint)

CO (Center Office)


The typical network structure of FTTH is shown as below. Depending on the user's different business requirements and home wire conditions, the home network can use different home networking modes: wire mode and wire +wireless AP access mode, then voice, broadband data, IPTV, WLAN and other services can be configured easily and flexibly.


Advantages of FTTH

1. It is a passive networkbasically from the local end to the user 

2. Its bandwidth is relatively wide, and the capability of long distance transmission accords with the large-scale application of telecom operators.

3. It can flexibly support various protocols due to its relatively wide bandwidth.

4. With the development of technology, including peer-to-peer, 1.25G and FTTH methods, relatively complete functions have been formulated.


Technological Development of FTTH


As an access technology, FTTH has been recognized and its technology has matured. There are two common fiber access technologies for FTTH, which are P2P (point-to-point technology) and P2MP (Point to multi-point communication PON).


P2P is a peer-to-peer network technology that allows two users without a public IP address to communicate directly.


PON is a passive optical network, which means there is not any active equipment but only optical fiber and passive components in the ODN (Optical Distribution Network) between OLT (Optical Line Terminal) and ONU (Optical Network Unit). PON mainly adopts point-to-multi-point network structure, which is the main technology to achieve FTTB/FTTH.


PON technology can be divided into narrowband PON technology for narrowband TDM access and ATM-based BPON (APON) for broadband access, EPON technology based on Ethernet packet transmission, and GPON technology integrates ATM/Ethernet/TDM. All three are PON technologies that have been commercially implemented for FTTX.


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