A patch panel or fibre distribution panel is a metal frame with pre- punched holes equally spaced horizontally along the front face. The holes, known as ports can be supplied populated with a specific type of bulkhead adapter or unpopulated. Unpopulated patch panels can be configured with bulkhead adapters to suit specific applications.What does it do?A fibre optic patch panel separates the hardwiring of the network from your network equipment. Shorter cables, known as patch cables are plugged into the front of the panel, and connect to longer cables at the back of the panel. ApplicationsAnywhere you would require the transmission of voice, video or data. Commercial businesses Television studios Military Schools, colleges and Universities Transportation Data centres Telecommunication networks TypesTraditional fibre optic patch panels are made to fit 19″ racking systems. They are measured to meet standard rack height dimensions. Heights are 1.75 in or 44.45 mm, referred to as 1U. The panels can be fixed into the rack or for easy access, sliding draw options are also available. UnpopulatedUnpopulated panels have several empty ports which can be configured with fibre optic bulkhead adapters to suit the application.PopulatedPopulated panels come with the ports already containing the fibre optic adapters. The different connectors available are:FC – Screw on connection. Can be used for single and multimode fibre. PC and UPC polish. LC – snap-on (RJ45 Style). Can be used for single and multimode fibre. PC, UPC and APC polish.LX.5 – same as LC but has a shutter over the end of the fibreMTP – (MPO) MPO is an interface type, MTP is one type of MPO connector. MTP is a US brandSC – snap-on. Can be used for single and multimode fibre. PC, UPC and APC polish.ST – Twist on. Can be used for single and multimode fibre. PC and UPC polishSingle mode – smaller core. One pathway for lightMultimode – larger core. Multiple pathways for light Simplex – Simplex fibre cable consists of a single strand of glass plastic fibre. Used where a single transmit or receive line between devices is requiredDuplex – Duplex fibre cable consists of two strands of glass plastic fibre. Used where separate transmit and separate receive lines are required.