By: Johnny Hill

When considering the realities of OSP cable, chemical resistance must be addressed.  The world is a nasty place, and fuels, oils and other kinds of chemicals can enter an OSP enclosure despite the best efforts of service providers and their technicians.  While inside-rated jumpers will degrade when exposed to such substances, cables meeting MIL-PRF 85045 are fully resistant.

Some Telco’s’ standard field practices include fogging a fiber distribution pedestal, cabinet or optical network terminal before opening it, to minimize the risk of subjecting technicians to wasps or bees that may have taken up residence inside.  By using ruggedized cable, properly terminated to all connectors present, this step can be taken without fear of damage to fiber plant.

Minimal Cost Difference

Considering all the benefits of high-grade, ruggedized fiber interconnect cable, it would be easy to assume that there is a significant cost differential.  The reality, however, is that this level of quality carries a minimal difference in price.  OSP equipment typically must deliver a performance life of twenty years or more, which makes the small additional cost more than worth it over the long haul.

Commercial OSP standards are constantly being updated, and perhaps someday soon they will catch up with reality.  Until then, it is well worth investing the time upfront to discover what methods and materials your OSP vendors are using in their cable products, as well as their other PON components.  Fiber-To-The-Home deployment is accelerating, and the demands are high.  With the right materials in place, you will achieve the level of reliability your customers expect.