The SAE 2008 World Congress was held at COBO Hall April 14-17, 2008. For the second year in a row, POFTO has organized a session aimed at US OEMs and their suppliers. The POFTO session was on Monday morning. Topics and speakers included the following:
Paul Polishuk reviewed recent developments in POF technology, including fibers, sources, connectors, modulation schemes, and new products, with special emphasis on automotive applications.Recent research results over the past year were covered, including 40Gbps over 100 meters at 1550nm by researchers at Georgia Tech, modulation of LEDs up to 1Gbps, transmission of 1Gbps over step index PMMA fiber by Olaf Ziemann of POFAC and S. Randel of Siemens, 10Gbps over 300 meters of PF GI POF, and 100Mbps over 275 meters of SI POF by the POF-ALL group in Europe.
Recent applications were described for IPTV in Europe, where POF do-it-yourself kits are provided to consumers by Deutsche Telekom and Swisscom to guarantee quality of service from the broadband termination on the side of the house or apartment and the set-top box.
The most exciting recent application was in racing cars by Menard Engines, where data loggers were connected to a controller using connectorless POF links. A weight savings of 10-12 pounds was realized and substantial reduction in the cost of the wiring harness. In addition to the weight and cost savings, the ability to terminate in the field and flexibility of installation were also important benefits pointed out by the design engineer.
Henry Muyshondt, the MOST Cooperation Technical Liaison and SMSC, described the present status of MOST in automobiles. Here are a few of the highlights of his presentation:
Connectors and manufacturing processes for cable assemblies used by MOST were discussed by Paul Mulligan of POFTO and FiberFin. Paul attributes one of the major successes of the MOST program to the development of automated processes for cable assemblies, allowing connections to be made in large quantities for pennies per termination. There are three main suppliers of automated termination equipment: Tyco/Komax, Schaefer Technologies, and Schleuniger. Paul stated that Schaefer's machine had the capacity of producing 10,500-12,500 assemblies per day, with 100 percent inspection and one-man operation, resulting in the cost of the cable assembly of less than a dollar.