Image Credit: Hirschmann, A BELDEN BRAND

 

Networking repeaters regenerate incoming electrical, wireless, or optical signals to preserve signal integrity and extend the distance over which data can travel. In wired networks, they connect segments of cables and strengthen incoming electrical signals to reduce or eliminate attenuation. Repeaters are also used to extend the range of wireless networks and fiber optic communications systems.

 

How Network Repeaters Work

Networking repeaters use various retiming and amplification techniques for signal regeneration. In Ethernet networks, they also use partitioning to prevent the propagation of faults from one network segment to the entire network.  In fiber optic communications, repeaters regenerate optical signals by converting them to electrical signals that, in turn, are reprocessed into optical signals for transmission.

 

This diagram depicts an Ethernet network with a 10 Base-5 segment and repeaters that connect to hubs.  

 

Image Credit: Mazza Networks

Types of Network Repeaters

The GlobalSpec SpecSearch database allows industrial buyers to select networking repeaters that are LAN, MAN, or WAN capable. These devices are available as chips, boards, and stand-alone modules, and may support wireless communications and/or IP telephony. When selecting products, however, buyers must also consider supported network protocols and interface types.

 

Product and Performance Specifications

Network protocols specify the attributes of data communications and, in some cases, the hardware requirements for repeaters.  These devices are equipped with one or more ports whose type supports the use of a specific cable type and/or connector. For example, ISDN networking repeaters use either an S/T interface or a U interface.

 

Features and Applications

Network administrators can select network repeaters with LED lights that indicate the status of the device and/or individual ports. Some of this networking equipment is stackable or rack-mounted to conserve space or fit into a standard 19" equipment rack.  Hardened networking repeaters that can withstand high temperatures are used outside of computer rooms.

 

References

The IT Library: Introduction to Repeaters

Network Devices: Repeaters, Bridges, Routers, and Gateways

What is Networking Hardware?


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