Infrastructure FAQs

Infrastructure FAQs

Infrastructure Cable Monitoring: Your Questions Answered…

When it comes to onshore and offshore cable monitoring, DAS technology can take all the strain for your business, monitoring and alerting you to possible cable infrastructure threats twenty four hours a day. If you want to find out more about how it works, browse our DAS cable monitoring FAQs below.

If you still have questions or want to discuss your particular challenges, just contact Fotech. Our team is always happy to explore your cable monitoring needs and advise on the best fibre optic monitoring solution.

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Infrastructure Cable Monitoring


DAS Technology

Perimeter Security

Infrastructure FAQs in Full

The worldwide structured cable industry will be worth $13.5 bn by the year 2025. Businesses and consumers depend on cable connectivity for every aspect of modern living – from accessing power to enjoying ever faster communications and data. So, for businesses responsible for maintaining cable uptime, any outage can be potentially disastrous.

That makes infrastructure cable monitoring a crucial operational area and a very important risk mitigation issue. But, especially when power, ethernet and fibre optic cables are located in hard to reach or subsea locations, manual monitoring is unrealistically expensive and inefficient.

The answer lies in advanced distributed acoustic sensing technology, found in Fotech’s LiveDETECT II® cable monitoring solution. Field tested and chosen by customers around the globe, our modular cable monitoring fully automates the monitoring process, locating, analysing and alerting you to threats within minutes.

Onshore and offshore cables are often at risk of damage from issues including:

  • Outages due to aging and wear and tear.
  • Cable damage – whether accidental or malicious.
  • Cable theft, due to the value associated with cabling materials.
  • Damage from third party events, such as onshore excavations or subsea marine disturbances.

Distributed acoustic sensing (DAS) is widely considered to be the most advanced automated cable monitoring technology available. However, it is important that the technology is built and configured in the optimal way to ensure that onshore and offshore cable monitoring is continuous and accurate.

Fotech LiveDETECT II® is a fully modular DAS monitoring system, custom built for your cable network and expandable to grow as your network grows. Even in hard to reach or subsea locations, LiveDETECT® constantly monitors events occurring along the cable by analysing and returning huge quantities of data to an alarm server every minute of every day. The technology can detect events to within metres of the location, analyse the nature of each event, and filter out false alarms or irrelevant results.

So, when a genuine threat to your infrastructure cabling occurs, your teams are alerted within just minutes and can use the intelligence provided to decide on the best, fastest and safest response to fix the problem.


DAS stands for distributed acoustic sensing. This advanced technology uses the fibre optic cables that are co-located with a cabling bundle as an acoustic sensor. By sending millions of pulses of light down the fibre optic, DAS turns the fibre optic into a sensor generating thousands of signatures. These are then returned to a base unit, which uses machine learning and AI to detect and analyse any anomalies in the signatures that might indicate a disturbance.

Whilst many DAS solutions are available, not all DAS technology is equal. Fotech’s LiveDETECT II® system is a modular, custom built DAS cable monitoring solution that incorporates advanced machine learning to not only detect, but accurately locate and interpret any potential threat to the cable network. It alerts on only genuine threats, pinpointing the location to within metres and warning you of a possible problem within just minutes. Your cable repair and maintenance teams can immediately decide on the best way to quickly address the problem before it causes a business-critical outage.

Distributed acoustic sensing – or DAS – is installed along cable networks to convert standard optical fibres into thousands of highly sensitive acoustic sensors.

A central DAS unit shoots pulses of light along the length of the fibre optic, returning Rayleigh Backscatter light to the unit. Fotech’s Helios® DAS unit analyses the data before a Panoptes alarm server determines the severity of the cable disturbance and warns you using a RAG system. False positives or irrelevant events are filtered out, ensuring that your cable maintenance teams do not waste time attending site to deal with events that turn out to be benign.

You can even build a historical picture of your cable’s acoustic signatures using our EDAM (Enhanced Data and Acoustic Management) platform. You can record, replay, and curate data to gather an enhanced picture of these signatures over time, enabling you to more accurately predict future events that may damage your cables.

Investing in automated cable monitoring with DAS is a decision that should be made carefully. Cost, functionality, reliability and the quality of intelligence are all important. It is also important to look at the track record of the technology, the quality of service offered by the provider, the accuracy and value of the data that the DAS system generates, and whether it can integrate with your own control room systems.

Fotech’s Live DETECT II® system is used by customers all over the world as an accurate and dependable solution for automatically monitoring cable networks of any size. They choose Fotech for our extensive technological expertise, our ability to calibrate DAS monitoring to the particular cable network, and LiveDETECT®’s ability to pinpoint the exact location and nature of any disturbance. LiveDETECT II® can be used with both onshore and offshore cables and fully integrated with control rooms, repair team communications and other monitoring systems such as UAV drones.

Different DAS systems have different capacities. You need to be sure that, when you install DAS to monitor your cables, the entire cable is protected.

Fotech’s LiveDETECT II® systems is a fully modular solution, so it can expand to any length of cable. Just a single DAS unit can monitor 100km of cable. Additional modules can be added if the cable is longer, or you plan to grow the cable network in the future.

LiveDETECT II® can withstand high temperatures and performs equally in remote, hostile or subsea terrains. As well as reliably monitoring onshore and offshore cables, this also make LiveDETECT II® the ideal solution for monitoring perimeters, borders, telecoms cables, and even smart city management systems.

Yes, LiveDETECT II® DAS cable monitoring offers UAV integration, CCTV integration, control room integration, and can also be integrated with your own maintenance teams’ communication systems. This is especially important in equipping repair teams to quickly locate and fix cable faults and damage without extensive flashover testing, which can in itself cause further damage to an already vulnerable cable. It also enables teams to fly a UAV device to the location of the cable integrity threat so that they can observe and understand the problem before deploying manual resources. Or, in the case of malicious or criminal damage, an integrated CCTV or UAV system can be used to monitor the event, gather important evidence for insurance and prosecution purposes, and even warn or follow the perpetrator.

Fotech’s DAS-powered LiveDETECT II® cable monitoring technology is configured to meet your specific challenges and business priorities. If you would like to find out more or discuss your requirements, just contact Fotech.

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