First introduced in 2003, Power over Ethernet (PoE) has made installing equipment in remote locations convenient and affordable. One single Ethernet cable can deliver both DC power and data to low power PoE-enabled equipment, including IP security cameras, network access points and switches, and building access controls.
PoE was originally developed for IP phone systems and delivered only 7W of power. Over time, the technology has improved and can now accommodate up to 90 watts / 57 volts. PoE eliminates the need for additional (and more dangerous) A/C power wire runs to end-point devices.
Outdoor PoE devices are exposed to weather-related surges
While most Ethernet cable is relegated for indoor use, more and more outdoor systems are utilizing PoE due to its ease of installation and operation. The downside is this exposes PoE devices to the risk of power surges or spikes caused by weather conditions, including lightning strikes and other disruptions.
Like any electronic system, PoE devices and their internal components operate within specific current and voltage ratings. Excess current or voltage can damage delicate internal components.