Urban ICT Arena’s dark fiber network is owned by Stokab, which in turn is owned by the Stockholm City Council. Stokab is an independent provider of passive infrastructure consisting of optical fibers without active termination equipment, i.e. dark fiber. Since it was founded in 1994, Stokab’s goal has been to build competitively neutral infrastructure capable of meeting future communication needs, spurring economic activity, promoting diversity and freedom of choice, and minimizing disruptions to the city’s streets.

A fiber optic cable uses light pulses instead of electricity when it transfers information from one point to another. Fiber optics is by far the fastest technology for data transmission currently available and has virtually unlimited capacity.

An optical fiber connection is also reliable, insensitive to electronic interference and virtually impossible to intercept. It is the only viable option for companies with high security requirements for data communication.

What fiber is made of

An optical fiber cable consists of a pure silica core (SiO2) and a cladding used to reflect light pulses. The number of fibers in a cable can vary. Stokab’s cable dimensions are 480, 640, and most recently 1000, which Stockholm was the first city in Europe to install (July 2012).

Multi-mode or single-mode

Fibers come in single-mode and multi-mode varieties. Multi-mode fibers have limited transmission capacity and are best suited for short distances and local installations such as in properties. The single-mode fibers used by Stokab have low attenuation (i.e. the light pulse is marginally weakened), support communication over long distances and enable very high transmission capacity.

Article written by Petra Dalunde