As Fiber to the Home (FTTH) becomes more and more common, the term of fiber optic cable is no longer a strange noun for us. Let review it, a fiber optic cable is a most popular type of network cables that contains strands of glass fibers inside an insulated casing, which is in fact a assembly of optical fibers, the strength members and the cable jacket. Compare with the copper cables, fiber optic cables carry the communication signals by pulses of light rather than the electric. Due to the high capacity and less susceptible to electrical interference, fiber cables are widely used for the fiber optic telecommunication networks.
The optical fiber cables come in many different designs to fit for different environment and application areas. Choosing the right designed fiber cables is essential for your networking jobs.
Loose Tube and Tight Buffer Cables
Loose tuber and tight buffer are two typical designs of the fiber optic cables. Loose tuber fiber cables are used for the outside plant applications, in the Loose Tuber fiber cables, the fibers are placed loosely within a large plastic tube. Usually there are 6-12 fibers placed in the single loose tube. These tubes are filled with a gel or water absorbent powder to protect them from moisture and physical stresses. Loose tube fiber cables are commonly used for underground installations, lashed or self-supporting aerial installations, and other outside plant applications.
Tight Buffer cable designs are used for inside plant application. The fibers inside coated with a buffer coating, with an outside diameter of 900um. Tight buffer cable has two typical constructions with come in breakout design and distribution design.
Ribbon and Aerial Cables
Except for the loose tube and tight buffer cables, there are also ribbon design and aerial design fiber cables. A ribbon cable is a cable with many conducting wires or fibers running parallel to each other on the same flat plane, ribbon cables offer the highest ﬁber density relative to cable size, maximize use of pathway and spaces, and facilitate ease of termination., which make the ribbon fiber cables the beat choice for deployment in campus, building, and data-center backbone applications where ﬁber counts more than 24 are required. The ribbon cable can be used in Local area network (LAN) campus and building backbones as well as datacenter backbones.
An aerial cable is an insulated cables usually containing all conductors required for optical transmission system or telecommunication line, which is suspended between utility poles. Aerial cables can be lashed to a messenger or another cable (common in CATV) or have metal or aramid strength members to make them self supporting. Figure 8 self supporting Aerial Cable consists of an optical fiber cable core and integrated stranded steel messenger, used for campus-type environments, aerial links self-support or ducted underground service for long runs between buildings.
According the fiber numbers needed for the fiber optic cables, there are also Single-fiber cables and multi-fiber cables. When selecting a cable design for indoor or outdoor use, it is important that you should know what kind of fiber cable designs that you need. You can have a composite cable including copper conductors for signals or power, contact several professional fiber optic cable OEM manufacturers such as FiberStore. Give them the specification, they will evaluate your requirements and make suggestions for you.