Several years ago, one of our long-time clients came to us with a problem.
They’d been using our LGX-style fiber panels for years. The panels had always worked well – and they still did – but their applications were changing.
It used to be that fiber networks were low-density, with fewer fibers running from the starting point to end users. However, as technology evolved and fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) and fiber-to-anywhere (FTTx) networks became more common, higher-density networks became more common, too.
That’s where the problem came from.
When you have hundreds of fibers coming out of the starting point, you run into two challenges:
- LGX style panels take up more rack space.
- Connectors are hard to access in high-density-style panels.
Racks get crowded. Finding the right fiber becomes a game of I-Spy. Reaching the right connector is like playing a game of Operation – and most technicians (no offense) don’t have the delicate hands of surgeons.
We agreed with our client. For high-density networks, a better solution was needed – one that would fit more connections into a smaller space while still allowing technicians to access connectors easily. So, we spent two years designing a product that would do this.
The result is the U-Series Fiber Connectivity System.
The system consists of our chassis with integrated slide rails that allow the individual fiber cassettes to slide out of the chassis.
It’s a patented design that’s like nothing else on the market, and it finally allows technicians to take up minimal rack space while improving connector access.
How the U-Series Fiber Connectivity System helps.
The U-Series Fiber Connectivity System makes connecting high-density fiber networks easier in three ways:
1. It has a much smaller footprint than traditional LGX systems.
Rack space is important, and it’s typically in short supply.
The cassette-based design of the U-Series Fiber Connectivity System minimizes required rack space by up to 71% compared to traditional LGX systems.
That frees up valuable rack space for revenue-producing equipment.
2. It makes accessing connectors easier with a telescoping design.
Typically, connectors are recessed up to four inches in a fiber patch panel, which makes accessing them difficult; if you’ve worked with patch panels, you know the challenge of carefully tracing for the right fiber and the challenge of accessing fiber connectors.
The reason for the traditional, recessed design is that fibers have a minimum bend radius. If the bend radius is exceeded, signal loss can increase, causing network errors or connector damage. Recessing the connectors allows fibers to maintain proper bend radius, but it also makes connectors harder to access – which, ironically, can lead to system problems.
After all, technicians typically have to access connectors half a dozen times before activating customers. They’re more likely to get dust or contamination on fiber connectors as they access them for testing, inspecting, or activating the fiber network. Every technician does their best to clean components, but the basic fact is that the less things are touched, the better. One study found that contaminated end-faces were the cause of fiber links failing 85% of the time.
Our telescoping cassette design allows the cassette to slide forward out of the chassis so connectors are easy to access, rather than being recessed. This is made possible by our patented cassette design.
The bottom line: If connectors are easy to access, connectors are more likely to stay clean, which reduces network errors of failures.
3. It makes finding fibers easier with fiber management shields that cover connectors in groups of twelve.
In many patch panels, it’s common to have dozens or hundreds of fibers to trace through, without an easy way to distinguish one fiber connection from another. Sorting through these fibers can be challenging and takes time.
Our cassettes have an individual fiber shield that covers and manages fibers in groups of twelve connections.
It’s much easier to find the right fiber in groups of twelve than to find it from among hundreds. This saves technicians times and makes their jobs easier when accessing the fiber network.
Want to find out if the U-Series Fiber Connectivity System is right for your needs?
We’re proud of this product – and our client who came to us looking for a better solution is very satisfied with it, too.
If you’re working with high-density fiber networks and need a connectivity system that makes connectors easier to access without taking up too much space, give us a call, and let’s talk about how the U-Series Fiber Connectivity System can meet your needs.
When you order from us, each component is manufactured in our US-based facility and can be shipped quickly to meet your project timelines, and we always ensure that you get the right components so that you’ll never need to make a return.