Recent changes to ANSI/TIA-569-E and ANSI/TIA-568.3-E Standards

As technology continues to advance, standards play a vital role in ensuring that our communication systems are efficient, reliable, and compatible with the latest innovations. Two recent releases in this space, ANSI/TIA-569-E and ANSI/TIA-568.3-E, are setting the stage for a more connected future.

ANSI/TIA-569-E: Telecommunications Pathways and Spaces Standard

This standard, published by the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA), is the latest iteration, superseding the 569-D version that saw the light of day in 2015. One of the standout features of ANSI/TIA-569-E is its collaborative development. Over 40 organizations within the telecommunications industry, including manufacturers, consultants, end users, and various other stakeholders, lent their expertise to create this comprehensive standard. The result? A document that not only reflects the latest industry trends but also anticipates the dynamic nature of the telecommunications landscape.

Updated References

Staying current with the latest technologies and practices is essential in telecommunications.

The revised standard includes updated references to keep pace with the ever-evolving industry.

Temperature and Humidity Requirements

ANSI/TIA-569-E incorporates revised temperature and humidity requirements initially introduced in ANSI/TIA-569-D-1. This ensures that the standard remains relevant in diverse environmental conditions.

Pathway and Space Considerations

As technology progresses, so do the demands on telecommunications infrastructure. ANSI/TIA-569-E addresses this by incorporating additional pathway and space considerations for supporting remote powering over twisted-pair cabling, originally published in ANSI/TIA-569-D-2.

ANSI/TIA-569-E recognizes three fundamental concepts crucial to telecommunications and building infrastructure:

Dynamic Buildings

Buildings are not static; they evolve. Remodeling is common throughout a building's lifespan, and this standard acknowledges and accommodates these changes in a positive manner.

Evolutionary Telecommunications

Telecommunications systems and media within buildings also evolve over time. ANSI/TIA-569-E maintains independence from specific vendor equipment and media, ensuring adaptability to changing technology landscapes.

Comprehensive Telecommunications

Telecommunications encompasses more than just voice and data. It encompasses a myriad of building systems, including environmental control, security, audio, television, sensing, alarms, and paging. Essentially, it encompasses all wired and wireless methods of conveying information within buildings.
Additionally, ANSI/TIA-569-E includes one normative (required) annex covering firestopping and three informative annexes. These informative annexes provide guidance on electromagnetic noise reduction for twisted-pair cabling, considerations for supporting remote powering over twisted-pair cabling, and a bibliography. The standard is organized into nine sections, addressing various aspects of telecommunications infrastructure within buildings.

ANSI/TIA-568.3-E: Optical Fiber Cabling and Components Standard

Now, let's shift our focus to ANSI/TIA-568.3-E, the Optical Fiber Cabling and Components Standard, which was released in September 2022. The biggest change in the new standard is the introduction of two new "universal" polarity methods: U1 and U2. Then, what is universal polarity and why is it beneficial for your cabling system?

What is universal polarity?

As per the TIA standard, the concept of universal polarity simplifies fiber network management by employing identical fiber patch cables and MPO cassette types at both ends of fiber links. This eliminates the need for polarity inversion or reconfiguration, reducing the complexity of fiber networks and streamlining network maintenance. Methods U1 and U2 both utilize Type-B trunks and A-to-B duplex patch cables. However, their differentiation lies in the array of adapters they employ. Specifically, Method U1 adopts Type-A (Key-Up to Key-Down) array adapters and Type-U1 fiber transitions, whereas Method U2 employs Type-B (Key-Up to Key-Up) array adapters and Type-U2 fiber transitions, as depicted in the table below:
The benefits of universal polarity

In contrast to the previous polarity methods, namely A, B, and C, the universal polarity method offers a simpler deployment solution, particularly beneficial for individuals less acquainted with fiber polarity intricacies. For instance, Method A entails the use of Type A straight-through MPO trunk cables, featuring a key-up connector at one end and a key-down connector at the opposite end. Method B utilizes key-up connectors on both ends to achieve the transceiver-receiver flip, while Method C closely resembles Method A, except that each pair of fibers is flipped.

The existence of three distinct polarity methods, each necessitating the correct patch cables, often leads to deployment errors. In contrast, the universal polarity methods, U1 and U2, adopt the core components of Method B, eliminating the requirement for unique MPO-to-LC cassettes on each end. Consequently, customers can employ the same MPO-to-LC cassettes and duplex patch cables interchangeably at either end of the channel, all while utilizing a Type-B trunk configuration.

Understanding the number of polarity methods
The standard comprises three well-known methods, labeled as A, B, and C, alongside the two new "universal" methods: U1 and U2. While the Standard presents these as sample methods, it's essential to recognize that numerous other polarity methods exist to achieve the same outcomes. Universal polarity introduces a novel approach to designing your cabling system.
MPO connector pinning guidelines introduced

In this latest revision of the standard, additional guidance on MPO connector pinning has also been introduced, aiming to facilitate a smooth transition from an array-based duplex system to an end-to-end array system in the future. When connecting MPO connectors, which utilize alignment pins, it is essential to adhere to the requirement that one plug must be pinned, while the other should remain unpinned. This adherence is crucial because MPO active equipment ports are configured to accept only unpinned plugs. 

As a result, for an array-based duplex system that is optimally designed to support a future transition to an end-to-end array system, specific specifications should be in place, as illustrated in Figures 1 and 2 below.

Array Trunk Cables: These should be pinned on both ends to ensure compatibility with the evolving array system. 

MPO Connectors within MPO-to-LC Modules: To facilitate seamless transitions, these connectors should remain unpinned. 

Future Array Patch Cords: Connecting MPO active equipment ports to the evolving array cabling, these patch cords should also remain unpinned on both ends to align with the standardized requirements.

Figure 1: Recommended Array-based Duplex System Pinning


Figure 2: Recommended Array System Pinning


In conclusion, these two ANSI standards, ANSI/TIA-569-E and ANSI/TIA-568.3-E demonstrate the telecommunications industry's commitment to evolving and adapting to meet the changing needs of buildings and fiber optic infrastructure. Standards like these are crucial for ensuring seamless, efficient, and reliable telecommunications systems in an ever-evolving world.

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