Why Use Power Over Ethernet (POE) on your IP cameras

Power Over Ethernet (POE) is a technology that was standardized in 2003 and 2009 and since then it made network devices (Voip Telephony, wireless LAN, ip camera and access points) work without plugging another DC adaptor to power the network device. There are several benefits for using POE and it is laid out here in this article.

Components of Power Over Ethernet:

  1. Power Sourcing Equipment (PSE)– This equipment is the one that provides power to the cable
  2. Powered Device (PD) – The device which receives its power from the cable.
  3. Cable – medium on where power and data is passing.

Standards of POE

IEEE 802.3af – provides up to 15.4 W of DC power to every device with a 12.95W assured power due to some power loss on the cables

IEEE 802.3at – also called POE plus provides 30 W for every device with a 25.5W of assured power

Kinds of POE:

POE – Splitter – supplies power to a device but the main difference is that it does the splitting of the power from the data to a separate input that the device can use. It will have 2 cables for the output: one that is used for data and the other one for power. Splitters are useful for deploying devices such as access points that are not POE ready and where there are no nearby AC outlets

POE Injector – supplies power through the network cable to a device that is POE capable

POE Switch – supplies power through multiple ports through the network cable to a device that is POE capable

Benefits of POE:

PoE makes the task of powering devices in remote sites or locations simpler.  In one key example, PoE changes the entire cost structure for deployment of IP Cameras in an enterprise, where IP Cameras need to be placed in locations without dependency on AC outlets.

The primary and major benefits include:

  • Cost savings – Poe significantly reduces the need for electricians and technicians to install conduit, electrical wiring, and outlets on walls or posts of the building. With PoE you use only one cable which is a CAT 5 or higher UTP cable. Cost reduction is very much significant especially in a large corporation setup.
  • Flexibility – PoE appliances or devices can be located or placed anywhere without the need for AC outlets.  For example the LAN access points can be found – and relocated – on or near ceilings, to optimize the RF reception.  For example, some customers find that access points become more effective if placed on the ceiling, away from an AC outlet.
  • Reliability – Because PoE networks have lesser wires so there is less likelihood of an inadvertent power disruption (accidental shut off, etc). Without any kind of disruption to the Power Supply (UPS) power to the devices is very much secure during a power failure.
  • Network Control – Using SNMP, network administrators can monitor and control powered devices, including resetting or shut-off. This allows increased security because the devices can be powered down when not being used, or in the presence of unauthorized access.
  • Safety – Power mains are not required to be totally eliminated. Since only 48v DC is used, PoE conforms to Underwriters Laboratories (UL) Safety Extra Low Voltage (SELV) classification.

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