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Harnessing Fiber Optics for Ultra-high-resolution Signage

Jun 10, 2008 12:00 PM, By John W. DeWitt

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The FreshDirect sign’s bandwidth usage—600Mbps—required modification of the Opticomm DVX-5000 model transport platform, which conforms to SMPTE 259 M standards for uncompressed SDI and normally supports data rates from 143Mbps to 540Mbps with transmission ranges up to 40km.

Alon Dagan, Emcore’s director of broadband video, says he sees more and more applications shifting from VGA to DVI signals over fiber, with the advantage of requiring little or no compression. The company also has a new AV and data transport platform, Optiva, that supports uncompressed DVI, VGA, and RGB signals over a single fiber. This reduces the cost and implementation complexity of using multiple fibers and multiplexing to handle large bandwidth applications with many screens.

Target applications for Optiva include airports, train stations, and museums. “Instead of using multiple wavelengths and multiple fibers, we can use one fiber to deliver a large amount of bandwidth very efficiently—either with no compression or less compression,” Dagan says. “This can simplify [integration] and reduce costs by using a single fiber, you can switch the signal easier, you can send to multiple sources and switch on the fly, all of which is harder to do with traditional approaches.”

Emcore’s single-fiber DVI-1000 systems will be put to use powering a variety of theaters, projectors, and digital signage located on seven levels of The Freedom Forum’s Newseum, an interactive museum of news located adjacent to the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. Emcore’s technology, supporting a progressive resolution of 1920x1200p, will transport uncompressed video feeds via fiber throughout the new facility.

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