Single Pair Ethernet

July 7, 2022 TE Connectivity



The Commercial Aerospace Landscape is Changing

As expectations rise for in-flight entertainment, security monitoring and other aircraft electronics, designers must engineer cabin networks with higher performance and standardization. Modeled on the success in the automotive industry, the upcoming ARINC 854 Cabin Equipment Network Bus standard brings Single Pair Ethernet (SPE) to aircraft supporting the need for greater efficiency in onboard networks.

TE Connectivity (TE) is already implementing this new standard in our Mini-ETH interconnect products. We’ve made this decision because the shift to a Single Pair Ethernet (SPE) standard offers substantial weight savings, more bandwidth and simpler installation and maintenance by using proven technologies from other markets.


Mini-ETH interconnection system provides new size, weight, and performance advantages for aircraft connectivity. 

Clint Schlosser, Product Manager, TE Connectivity

Mini-ETH Single Pair Ethernet (SPE) System for Aircraft Design

Single Pair Ethernet (SPE) enables Ethernet transmission with two wires, rather than eight. Specified in ARINC 854, TE Connectivity (TE) is now bringing its pioneering Mini-ETH interconnect system to the Commercial Aerospace market. This smaller, lighter, smarter technology provides size, weight and performance advantages for today’s and tomorrow’s aircraft, because the connected aircraft starts with fewer wires.


Challenges of Aircraft Cabin Connectivity


Check out our White Paper on Single Pair Ethernet

Today’s aircraft carry more electronics than ever. Designers must fit screens, sensors, data hubs, switches, solid-state drive (SSD) arrays, computers, IFE servers, and other electronics throughout the airframe and cabin. All those electronics require a lot of wiring that significantly affects fuel performance.

To be more sustainable, the aircraft cabin network has to evolve—becoming smarter while growing lighter. Standardized cabin network design concepts are being developed and deployed to address SWaP and connectivity challenges. Modular, scalable distributed architectures promise greater flexibility than classic centralized IT network topologies.

The starting point for current and future connectivity options is the Ethernet network protocol. Thanks to its versatility, affordability, and universally accepted open standards, Ethernet is evolving at the physical layer to support the SWaP and performance needs of modern aircraft cabin networks.




FAQ's for Aerospace Single Pair Ethernet (SPE)

Q: What is Single Pair Ethernet (SPE)?

A: Single Pair Ethernet (SPE) enables the transmission of data by Ethernet using only one twisted pair. It is currently capable of transmission rates ranging from 10Mb/s to 1Gb/s. For aerospace applications, initial release is for 100BT1, future (next) version will be for 1000BT1.


Q: What are the advantages of Single Pair Ethernet (SPE) over conventional Ethernet? 


A: Conventional Ethernet which is based on industrial applications requires two or four pairs of wires. In comparison Single Pair Ethernet (SPE) only has one pair. Compared to the four and eight wires in conventional Ethernet cable categories this two-wire design cuts cabling weight nearly in half. Single Pair Ethernet (SPE) helps to reduce costs and system complexity. Thanks to its versatility and universally accepted open standards it supports the design of distributed network architectures in modern aircraft cabins.

About the Author

TE Connectivity is a global industrial technology leader creating a safer, sustainable, productive and connected future. Our broad range of connectivity and sensor solutions, proven in the harshest environments, enable advancements in transportation, industrial applications, medical technology, energy, data communications and the home. With approximately 80,000 employees, including more than 7,500 engineers, working alongside customers in approximately 140 countries, TE ensures that EVERY CONNECTION COUNTS.

More Content by TE Connectivity
Previous Article
Urban Air Mobility: Together eVTOL is Ours
Urban Air Mobility: Together eVTOL is Ours

High-power, high-voltage, high-bandwidth interconnect technologies for electric Vertical Take Off and Landi...

Next Article
5 Benefits of Fiber Optics
5 Benefits of Fiber Optics

When it comes to capacity and throughput, no other physical media can come close to matching fiber optics. ...