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Don’t Get Left in the Dark: 10 Benefits of NOC Dark Fiber Monitoring

By Ian Stewart, NOC Business Process Manager

Network operations center (NOC) monitoring is critical for assessing dark fiber or active fiber networks and accurately responding to issues in a timely manner. While your standard NOC service may offer advantages over self-monitoring or manual processes, Tilson’s NOC goes the extra mile with additional benefits that enhance network reliability, minimize downtime, allow for informed decision-making, and improve proactive maintenance.

What is Dark Fiber?

Dark fiber refers to fiber optic infrastructure that is deployed but not currently in use. These unused or unlit optical fiber cables have the potential to carry a large amount of data and are commonly leased to carriers and internet service providers. While the leased fiber is lit with a customer’s electronics, providers and carriers may still want the fiber owner to monitor the performance of the fiber and respond to any issues.

10 Benefits of Tilson NOC Fiber Monitoring

Monitoring dark fiber through a NOC service involves tracking network performance, integrity, and security, and responding to issues, both proactively and in the moment. While this monitoring is crucial for managing reliable fiber networks, Tilson’s NOC provides additional benefits beyond your standard NOC service to keep your network at its peak, including:

  1. Continuous Monitoring: Get real-time, continuous monitoring of your fiber infrastructure. This means any changes or issues can be detected as they occur even when you’re not actively running manual optical time-domain reflectometer (OTDR) tests.
  2. Automated Alerts: Tilson’s NOC sends automated alerts and notifications in the event of signal degradation, excessive loss, or other anomalies, allowing for quick response and resolution to minimize downtime.
  3. Remote Accessibility: Remote access to monitoring data allows you to check the status of your fiber network from anywhere with an internet connection. This is especially useful for geographically distributed networks.
  4. Data Analytics: Tilson’s NOC collects, analyzes, and retains large quantities of data over time through advanced data analytics and machine learning algorithms to identify trends, patterns, and potential issues that might not be easily detected through manual tests alone. Historical data and data forecasts aid in capacity planning and infrastructure upgrades.
  5. Reduced Human Error: While OTDR testing relies on technicians to perform manual tests at specific intervals, monitoring services eliminate the possibility of human error in scheduling or conducting tests.
  6. Expert Support: Tilson’s NOC fiber monitoring services offer access to a team of experts who can analyze monitoring data, interpret trends, and provide recommendations for optimizing your network’s performance and reliability.
  7. Customization: Tilson tailors monitoring services to your specific needs, allowing you to set thresholds, define alerts, and customize reporting based on your network’s characteristics and requirements.
  8. Time and Resource Savings: Save time and resources that would otherwise be spent on manual testing and analysis. This is particularly beneficial for large-scale or complex networks.
  9. Predictive Maintenance: By analyzing data over time, Tilson NOC monitoring predicts potential issues before they become critical. This enables proactive maintenance and reduces the risk of unexpected network outages.
  10. Integration with Network Management: Tilson services integrate with existing network management systems, providing a centralized view of your network’s health alongside other network elements.

Stay Connected Anytime, Anywhere with Tilson’s NOC Dark Fiber Solutions

Each network is different, and Tilson’s NOC uses a strategic combination of systems to provide best-in-class monitoring for the unique needs of each client. A common practice is the use of an optical time-domain reflectometer (OTDR), which sends short pulses of light down fiber cables to detect and pinpoint anomalies or breaks. In addition, a distributed fiber optic sensing (DFOS) tool is used to detect changes in temperature and vibration which is particularly useful for security purposes. Tilson deploys remote testing units to perform automatic and on-demand tests that gather valuable insights without the need for physical intervention. However, when physical inspections are required, Tilson has the advantage of an in-house outside plant team. This nationwide team of experts responds at a moment’s notice to resolve network issues.

By combining our customizable state-of-the-art systems and hardware with our national footprint, Tilson’s NOC provides the most robust dark fiber monitoring and the fastest response times for issue resolution. With benefits beyond your standard NOC service, Tilson ensures you are never in the dark to the status of your dark fiber network.

Contact Tilson’s NOC team today to learn how your dark fiber or active fiber network will benefit from enhanced NOC monitoring services.

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