SCIENTISTS MAY HAVE solved disconnecting and low data rate problems with L2, the DSL low power mode. By using artificial noise during initial connections, they have stabilized the modem to prevent crashing and restarts at lower data speeds.
There is energy use that you pay for and then there is energy use that your telecoms and website owners pay for. Those numbers dwarf your monthly electric bill and are growing at an enormous pace. Fraunhoffer Institute scientists estimate that broadband DSL uses roughly 20 billion kilowatt-hours of energy per year worldwide.
L2 or low-power mode on broadband DSL is standard and comes with most devices but it is not currently used. L2 mode creates interference with other DSL systems in its vicinity. Basically you’ll get online if your neighbor’s modem isn’t online but when they attempt to get online after you’ve successfully connected using the L2 mode their attempts will cause your modem to crash and restart. When it does restart, your data speeds usually will have dropped significantly. In other words, it’s a pain to use the L2 mode when you have neighbors that also have a modem.
Living in po-dunk nowhere, the L2 mode is an excellent option. Much beyond that, where most of the world lives, like in cities, it isn’t workable. The L2 standard is so problematic that it is disabled on most modems and is not included in the next round of standards making for VDSL, which has higher transmission speeds.
Scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Communication Systems ESK have demonstrated that it is possible to use artificial noise to stabilize DSL connections while using the L2 mode. If implemented and adopted in future standards, this technology could mean a reduction of energy consumption by network operators in the range of 3 million kilowatt-hours per year. Think of this as reducing broadband costs, increasing the lifespan of legacy hardware, and saving the environment.
The artificial noise simulates typical cable bundle interference to the broadband receivers. When a modem tries to connect to the Internet, the system registers normal interference even if the device next door is in L2 mode. The connection will be at a slightly reduced transmission rate but it remains stable when a neighbor causes real noise by going online.
There is no guarantee that network operators will pass their savings onto you, the person using the connection. However, it may make prices rise more slowly as the cost of energy rises the need for additional energy to connect has been reduced wile making connections more stable.S|A