Don’t Be Passive About Passives (2022)

By Kyle Hohman, Shaw Communications

As operators look ahead to expand their speed tiers and offerings, they will also be looking to expand their plant capacity to 1.8 GHz Extended Spectrum DOCSIS (FDD) and DOCSIS 4.0. Passives are the highest quantity device in the outside plant that limits the usable bandwidth and will take the most amount of time and energy to replace.

This paper will discuss the methods that an operator can use to replace passive equipment in their plant and examine the operational and technical benefits of each method. We will explore the considerations for evaluating passives in the plant during field trials from both plant performance and maintenance savings perspectives.

For context, the paper will present some of the advantages of having passive upgrades completed before actives, specifically around the ability for 1.8 GHz signals to pass through the plant to measure for ingress, egress, and other test signals. We will also discuss the benefits of being able to set up plant actives by already having passives upgraded to 1.8 GHz, as opposed to a partial tilt setup, which would require the identification of where rolloff exists in order to do a drop-in style upgrade.

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