Everyone remembers the 1985 classic, “Back to the future” don’t we? In the movie, the flux capacitor powered the DMC delorean (the magical car, in case you have forgotten) to travel within the framework of time and space. A quick fast forward and the capacitor today, is the high speed, flexible, reliable, and totally upgradeable optical fibre that provide connectivity at the speed of light. We connect, download, upload, transfer and experience both emotions and technology with utmost ease.
In the current scenario, telecom companies and other leading communication service providers are constantly trying to upgrade and improve. With stiff competition, the need to provide a better data network- 5G network- at reduced deployment time and cost has become paramount. We are looking for a fast and cost-effective way to increase fibre counts in the existing infrastructure and thus, improve last-mile networks to support high bandwidth services and keep end consumers happy. STL, with its global manufacturing capabilities and superior micro cables solutions, gives you an edge over the rest when it comes to innovating fibre cable solutions.
STL’s BulletTM Series micro cables are installed using a widely accepted and used technique called cable blowing that places the optical fiber cable into a pre-installed duct. After a few hundred metres of cable being pushed into the duct, compressed air at high speed is injected into the duct inlet. A pushing device is used to push the compressed air further in, along the cable. Here’s a fun fact. Did you know it is possible to install micro duct cable in continuous lengths of more than 1000 meters using the blowing method?
STL has become the first company in India that has an in-house micro cable installation testing track built to IEC standard IEC 60794 – 1-21. The testing track is like a real life simulation of cable performance allowing the cables to be checked for physical parameters such as diameter and strength, in a real life blowing environment. This exercise helps to understand and provide, an accurate estimate of the required man power, speed and time required to complete the cable installation.
Our testing parameters are stringent. From confirming whether the cable is perfect for air jetting or blowing application in a particular micro duct size to checking for cable flexibility, stiffness, weight and cable to duct fill ratio, the testing parameters match international standards for cable quality and durability.
The tests happen in 2 phases. At first, the duct track itself is tested for load fill ratio. A route verification test is done by passing a test object, such as a sphere, approximately equal to the diameter of the cable in size, or 1 m of the actual cable to be installed, through the route to be populated. The purpose is to check for any obstructions that might block the cable route. This is followed by a feasibility test which is designed to evaluate the blowing performance of a micro duct optical cabling into a protected micro duct. The test conditions match those in actual practical installations and are performed under ambient conditions, with temperatures above 0°C (to avoid blocking with ice) and below +40°C (above which temperature blowing performance has been observed to rapidly degrade)
The next phase of testing includes the process of actual installation and testing of the cable and duct for all necessary parameters. We promise our customers a product that helps save time and money. The proof of our ingenuity and promise is the detailed report which we share with our customers highlighting the simulated performance of the cable on 17 parameters directly or indirectly affecting the installation process.