Fiber-optic network expansions are necessary to support customer demands for faster Internet connections and higher bandwidths. To avoid common challenges that could arise during this expansion, it’s crucial to utilize a uniform data solution that supports georeferenced data about the existing and planned infrastructure throughout the entire cycle, from the high-level design phase through final operations.
Through spatial reference, data from different sources can be brought together on a digital map, then analyzed and visualized so that the information is provided transparently and can act as a “single point of truth” for all parties involved.
Location-specific data about the existing network, possible connection points, and potential customers deliver added value through the spatial overlay. Publicly available data from open data initiatives can also be relevant, for example, in the case of nature reserves with strict construction restrictions. Additionally, data on competition, demographic statistics, and economic information complement the overall picture in order to qualify and determine potential expansion areas spatially. Map visualization allows planners to see which areas are suitable for expansion and where high customer potential can be found. This information can be shared directly with stakeholders and decision-makers to make a valuable contribution to the investment decision.
Another benefit of a uniform data model and georeferenced visualization is that detailed planning will be accompanied by a satellite view of the network infrastructure. If, for example, the planning brings cables from the wrong side of a house, this can now be corrected with a few simple mouse clicks. Further, graphical views of splice closures and cassettes, cabinet views with passive and active components, as well as schematic representations of microduct bundles with assigned fiber optic cables enable users to effectively carry out their detailed planning.
When location intelligence is combined with network infrastructure details, users are also well-equipped to make smarter decisions about network capacity planning, how to design redundant routing, and setting operational priorities. Furthermore, this digital data platform will also make it easier to divide the rollout between different teams and partners so that the numerous activities in the field of passive infrastructure rollout, and the different activities in the deployment of the active network components, can be structured and assigned accurately.
To ensure teams on site know exactly what technical work needs to be done and which information needs to be obtained, work orders should be automatically generated according to planning and then assigned and sent to the different teams. With the ability to retrieve these work orders on mobile devices, employees both on site and in the back office can stay abreast of up-to-date information.
Ulrich Schälling is Head of Business Line Networks at FNT Software, discussed this and more in Pipeline Magazine. Read his article here.