People love stories about survival in difficult situations. Shows like Ice Road Truckers, Storm Stories, and Wicked Tuna tell the tales of rugged people braving cold, wind, and storms. Meanwhile, the viewing public looks on from the comfort of our homes.
Of course it’s not just people that need to fight to survive in such extreme conditions. Equipment does too. And that includes network equipment.
Equipment that lives in controlled environments like central offices and data centers has it easy. But gear that resides in outdoor cabinets in frigid, wet, windy, salty, or sweltering conditions has a rougher go of it. So does equipment that needs to be able to operate in environments in which the temperature is highly variable.
Those environments may be in exotic and far-off locations. But sometimes they’re just outside the front door or down the block.
Whatever the case, these rugged environments call for gear that is temperature hardened.
But weather isn’t the only challenging factor for equipment placed in outdoor cabinets. Such gear can also be susceptible to critters like birds, mice, raccoons, snakes, and squirrels. These animals may see these outdoor enclosures and what’s inside them as a tasty treat, a nice place to nest, or even an acceptable outhouse.
Humans can be a threat to outdoor gear too. Theft and vandalism are not uncommon.
To address all of the above, some network equipment suppliers deliver ruggedized equipment and enclosures. For example, Ciena offers service delivery switches that are humidity and temperature hardened.
The company says it’s also pioneered the use of street-based cabinets for its packet-optical gear. These cabinets are part of Ciena’s distributed network architectures, which place equipment closer to customers.
Edited by Maurice Nagle