Resources on Fiber Optic Products

Future-Proof Fiber Networks Require the Highest Quality Fiber Cables

New FTTH networks are being built at a record pace. An integral part of any fiber network is the fiber jumper assemblies that help interconnect the systems, its branching devices and fiber drops. Fiber network owners put a lot of emphasis on quality components to ensure a future-proof network with minimal maintenance and power costs that will last at least 15 years, and jumpers are one of those components.

Fiber to the Home Time Study for Connecting the Home using FastPass™

A large service provider1 commissioned a study to quantify the time saved with the Clearfield FastPass™ broadband deployment method during the segment of the job where the fiber is connected at the home. The time study was for residential accounts only, no commercial properties. A total of 159 installations were surveyed. The results were compared to a previous baseline survey. Utilizing the FastPass method resulted in time savings between 35% and 38% versus the baseline method for Outside and Inside work performed.

Thermal Management of Outside Plant Cabinets

Outside Plant (OSP) cabinets are exposed to several unique challenges as they operate in all types of weather conditions that can affect the performance of the network equipment. The performance and reliability of communication equipment is directly related to operating temperature. Therefore, it is necessary that an OSP cabinet provides thermal management for the electronics housed within it.


Means Rethinking Topology, Technician Touches, Time, and Trade-Offs

Focusing on delivering products to market that are craft-friendly, require toolless operation where possible, and provide a better return on capital investment, Clearfield has helped over 800 independent telcos and similar companies take advantage of its product designs. The passive optical distribution network is the new frontier, and Clearfield is very honored to bring ideas to you.

Optical Distribution Network: Splitter Options and Tradeoffs

Designing, building, operating and maintaining an optical distribution network (ODN) requires weighing a series of trade-offs in order to meet the requirements and expectations from the business planning process. In addition to minimizing the network’s first cost and ability to meet the subscriber take rate, we need to take into account the possible evolution of the network.

StreetSmart Pre-Assigned FDH Cabinet

No two fiber deployment are the same. Every fiber deployment has its own unique requirements. With that in mind, network planners and designers have the difficult task of balancing upfront capital expenditures (CAPEX) against future operational expenditures (OPEX). One component of the design/build is sizing and placement of the fiber distribution hubs (FDH). Decisions must be made on how many ports are going to be needed and how many splitters need to be included in the initial deployment to satisfy near term customer take rates.

The StreetSmart Fiber Hand-Off Box for Wireline to Wireless Applications

By Tom Warren

In the coming years, small cell antennas will become as common as fire hydrants. In urban and suburban neighborhoods we expect to see them sprout up in many different environments. We may see these small cell radios being attached to a strand, mounted to an existing pole, or even deployed in a “smart pole” specifically designed to house these radios in an aesthetically pleasing manner.

YOURx Multi-Purpose Terminal (MPT)

By Tom Warren

Fiber deployments come in different shapes and sizes and are driven by a variety of motivating factors. Some are most concerned with the least upfront construction costs. Others are more concerned with the total cost of ownership. The conventional hardened fiber optic connector (HFOC) terminal and drop solutions designed for massive fiber deployment projects work well in some situations, but are certainly not the optimal choice for every fiber deployment. Attempts to try and force-fit this single style solution for every type of fiber customer is a simply not wise.

Speeding Time to Revenue in the MDU/MTU

By: Aaron Krebs

When deploying fiber to both greenfield and brownfield MDU/MTU deployments, pre-connectorized, plug-and-play concepts are more cost effective than traditional fusion splicing methods. The Clearfield plug-and-play solutions simplify fiber deployments to brownfield or greenfield MDU/MTU’s for faster deployments and less labor costs than traditional fusion splicing methods.

Fiber to the Multi-Dwelling Unit: Clearfield Solution Speeds Time-to-Market

As service providers strive to maximize the broadband speeds they can deliver, they are increasingly deploying fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP). Best practices for deploying FTTP to single-family homes are well established, but the same is not true for multi-dwelling units (MDUs).

The Road to 5G is Paved with Good (Fiber) Intentions

There is no doubt that the advent of 5G will soon be upon us and everyone from service providers to customers are excited about the potential of what 5G can bring to the table.

Fiber to the Home Offers Opportunity for Wireless Internet Service Providers

Wireless internet service providers (WISPs) play an important role in providing broadband internet connectivity to rural areas that traditionally have been too costly to serve using other technologies. We invite you to download this white paper where we explore the economics, challenges and opportunities of the WISP business. We also compare fixed wireless and FTTH technologies and deployment costs and discuss which technology can best meet customer needs for various deployment scenarios.

Optical Components: Not to be Taken for Granted

By Matt Brigham

Optical components should not be taken for granted in your Passive Optical Network (PON). Optical Components are a very important part of PON architecture.

FieldShield YOURx Platform: Offering Ultimate Flexibility and Choice in the Last Mile

By: Tom Warren

When designing a fiber network, there is no “one size fits all” approach. There are a great many factors to take into consideration that will shape the physical characteristics of the build – and most will be dependent on what is deemed the top defining priority.

As Seen in CED: Consider All Options and Win the FTTx Game

By: Tom Warren

When sports fans sit down to enjoy watching their favorite team, they cheer for a hard-fought win. It’s the same mindset for cable operators that seek to play on the FTTx field.

Why Let a Cat Have Your Network By the Tongue? FAOFC It!

By: Marty Adkins

Cat 5, Cat 6, Cat 7, Cat 8, Cat whatever! Why let a Cat dictate your cabling infrastructure when there is a future proof solution currently available?

As Seen in BBC Magazine: Increasing Fiber Capacity Without Construction

By: Tom Warren

By using more wavelengths on each optical fiber, service providers can add bandwidth – and revenues – without adding new fibers.

Passive Optical Components in Harsh Environments

By: Matt Brigham

This paper will discuss the importance of quality passive fiber optic components in a harsh environment. It will focus on the importance of environmental testing and certification of components used in an outside plant fiber optic network.

The Magic of In-Cassette Splicing: Making "Hubs with Stubs" a Thing of the Past

By: Paul Kmit

Over the last 10 years, 100 million homes around the world have been passed with fiber cable that supports Fiber-To-The-Home (FTTH) networks. An important element of a FTTH build is the Fiber Distribution Hub (FDH) or cabinet, which houses optical splitters and distributes incoming feeder cables from the central switching office to outgoing distribution cables.

As seen in AGL Magazine: Utilizing Emerging Technology to Reduce Fiber Deployment and Construction Costs

By: Scot Bohaychyk

Utilizing emerging technology to reduce fiber deployment and construction costs will not only reduce the time (ie. Labor) required, but will also be less disruptive to the environment in which the DAS service is being installed. The following case study illustrates the improvements these emerging technologies can deliver.

As Seen in Broadband Communities: Rethinking Drop Fiber

By: Johnny Hill

Fiber to the X – that’s a term you should be familiar with if you are anywhere near the telecom industry. Any potential recipient is thrilled at the prospect of having a dedicated fiber delivered to the X. Greater bandwidth, future-proofed for whatever technologies may come our way, is the way everything should be going. This is the easy part – agreeing that fiber to the X is a great concept. Now let’s talk about the hard part.

Above or Below Grade - You Now Have a Choice: The FieldSmart Makwa Fiber Delivery Hub

By: Steve Knudtson

As the demand for broadband services continues to grow exponentially, the importance of improved network design and layout, as well as constructing the physical plant and fiber backbone to provide those services, continues to challenge the industry. Driving these challenges is the need to accomplish the network design and build in the most cost effective manner while maximizing the revenue potential once the networks have been deployed and are operational.

The Latest Generation Building Block Technology: Clearview Black

By: Paul Kmit

As fiber continues to be deployed more frequently and deeper in the network, there is constant pressure to develop products with higher density to achieve a smaller footprint. For inside plant environments, high density solutions save floor space which is always a goal whether you’re in a telephone office, head end, data center or customer premise facility. In the outside plant, smaller footprints help reduce the increasingly cluttered landscape of boxes on busy city streets and in community neighborhoods. Clearfield has created yet another space-saving, high density fiber delivery device – the latest generation Clearview Cassette; Clearview Black.

The Success of the Whole Depends on the Success of its Parts: The WaveSmart Makwa Splitter

By: Ernie Power

I know what you are thinking: "What in the H. E. double hockey sticks is a Makwa?" Isn’t that one of those cute little critters that you aren’t supposed to get wet or feed after midnight? Oh wait, that’s a Mogwai. Never mind. Makwa is the name of Clearfield’s new revolutionary, small form factor OSP hub. And like the bear from which it gets its moniker, the FieldSmart Makwa Hub is just as comfortable below ground as it is above. And yet, as with any new development, the success of the whole depends on the success of its parts. One key component in this new product line is the Makwa Splitter. Consistent with our simple yet innovative design methodology, Clearfield has developed a splitter offering that utilizes a 75% smaller package with smaller diameter legs resulting in 70% less cable pile up than its predecessors. But smaller packages don’t necessarily equal better assemblies, and as with anything, the devil is in the details.

As Seen in the February Edition of OSP Magazine: Four Steps to Convert "Fiber to the Press Release" into "Fiber to Reality"

By: Matt Brigham

The need for speed has never been more apparent than it is in today’s “always-on” society. Consumer and businesses alike are continually increasing their reliance on data centered devices. It’s a gigabit broadband world, and people are putting unprecedented strains on the current infrastructure.

INDUSTRY REVIEW: Clearfield Pushable Fiber Duct System Total Cost Of Ownership Review

Performed By: RVA, LLC

The need for bandwidth speed is upon us and increasing every day. Today’s wireless device users are hungrily consuming bandwidth at a rate never experienced before. Then there’s video streaming along with countless devices and applications burning up the bandwidth and capacity. And every service provider is feeling the pressure as their networks are overloaded, speeds are moving at a turtle’s pace and frustrated customers are complaining.

Micro-trenching Provides DAS Construction Cost Savings

Traditionally, when a new communications line or fiber is needed in an urban setting such as a downtown area or business surrounded by parking lots, the cost of getting that service to the venue is often very prohibitive. The need for the service isn’t any less, however, carriers need to weigh the revenue potential to see if the cost can even be recouped.

Bigger Isn't Always Better

By: Cindy Olson

The need for bandwidth speed is upon us and increasing every day. Today’s wireless device users are hungrily consuming bandwidth at a rate never experienced before. Then there’s video streaming along with countless devices and applications burning up the bandwidth and capacity. And every service provider is feeling the pressure as their networks are overloaded, speeds are moving at a turtle’s pace and frustrated customers are complaining.

Passive Optics for the MSO: Coherent Solutions for Reliable Service

By: Tom Warren

The Clearfield PON Pedestal product was originally designed for housing splitters and termination ports for smaller pockets (96 or less) of FTTH PON customers, but our customers have found other, innovative ways in which to use the PON Pedestal. One such customer found it is ideal for housing terminated WDM modules and splitters in the OSP. More recently, this customer has been using the solution for fiber termination and to house a diverse collection of terminated optical components in the OSP. The intent of this white paper is to provide other MSO Fiber Engineers information on the PON Pedestal solution that will reduce headaches and installation times for them going forward.

Unloading the Tower

By: Scot Bohaychyk

The increase in broadband demand has placed some additional and sometimes dangerous loads on our nation’s cellular towers. The newer methods of delivery such as LTE provide subscribers with better service; however, they require larger antenna planes, and additional cables. In the case of the cables, some sort of crane or other lifting apparatus is required to install them, and this can be very costly. Also, it is usually not possible to remove the current equipment before the new is installed. This causes additional problems with weight and wind loading. Fiber optics and microduct technologies are providing the much needed relief to those tower engineers, carriers, tower contractors and others that deal with this on a daily basis.

Fiber to the Campus

By: Scot Bohaychyk
The Challenge of Providing Broadband to the University Setting

One of the biggest challenges facing fiber deployments on a campus is the lack of easy access to structures. The design and layout of a college campus (or any campus for that matter) with dorms, arenas, stadiums etc. present significant challenges to the provider. The college campus, with its makeup of both students and staff, is one of the most data hungry environments in today’s world.

The Basics of Issuing an RFP

By: Gary Tyler

Issuing the Request for Proposal (RFP) should be the summation of your business plan, with full knowledge of regulatory implications, funding considerations and a clear understanding of the products and services you intend to use. Before getting started on your RFP, it is essential to remember three major aspects of the process: details, details and details. The RFP is the tool responders will use to supply you with products and services that will best satisfy your needs. To be successful, they will need a clear and concise understanding of what you are trying to accomplish. We will now explore the basics steps in preparing and issuing an RFP for your Fiber to the Home (FTTH) project.

Get a Clear View on Reducing the Cost of Broadband Deployment

By: Cheryl Beranek
Using the FieldSmart FxHD to Reduce Real Estate Costs

Our challenge as an industry is simple: The key to broadband deployment is to reduce the cost to deploy it. The answers, of course, are a little more difficult to come by. As an industry, we have aggressively worked to reduce the cost of capital equipment and we must continue on that quest. But, we must also recognize that there are many pieces to this puzzle and we must evaluate every one. Look to Clearfield as a source of information as we look to identify these puzzle pieces.

Reducing the Cost of DAS and Cellular Backhaul Construction Using Pushable Fiber

By: Scot Bohaychyk

With 80% of a telecommunications build being spent on labor, conducting a thorough analysis of labor costs is critical to the containment of deployment costs. A deployment will require a staff of planners, engineers, field crews and construction forces that are knowledgeable about the type of services to be offered and how they are to be delivered. Little attention has been placed on the underlying foundation of these networks – the protection and management of the physical layer. The physical fiber network must be protected as light passes from one point to the next, ensuring no degradation of performance. It is crucial that anyplace in which a fiber is terminated, connectorized or spliced, that adequate fiber management practices are followed.

Reducing the Cost of Fiber Deployment with Pushable Fiber

By: Cheri Beranek

Few would argue that it is important to ensure that your network is strong, reliable and quickly restorable. However, the debate centers on how to build a network that isn’t too costly to deploy or operate.

Taking Fiber Deep Into the Network: Performance Quality Does Not Have to Cost You

By: Johnny Hill

In the past 15 years, I have assisted hundreds of customers with their network design, planning, and associated fiber management needs. These networks have ranged from the booming CATV HFC days of the mid-90’s through fiber exhaust scenarios of the telcos to the gargantuan bandwidth needs of the various FTTH deployment strategies. One of the constants in all of them has been the consideration of link loss budget planning: How far out can I get with my current optical power before I have to terminate or amplify? I have always been amazed that more often than not, the first answer to distance limitation is to plop in more optical power in the way of EDFA’s, transmitters, and amplifiers. Optical transmission and having the power to get it where you want it to go can be an expensive affair. However, boosting power is not the only way to gain distance.

Fiber Management Considerations for Optical Components

By: Tom Warren

Fiber is “future-proofing” technology. The bandwidth capacity of a single fiber dwarfs any other physical medium. In an effort to capture this advantage and to limit future infrastructure builds, many companies are dedicating fibers—running a single fiber between the central office or head-end and every customer premise unit.

FTTH—Building A Network

By: Brian Schrand

FTTH is an ever evolving technology. However, the methods used to engineer and build FTTH networks are traditionally the same as those used for copper networks. These practices are cost effective and work well when building a FTTH network. The techs building the aerial or underground plant are familiar with the procedures carried over from the copper world so training is minimal and, in most cases, the quality of work is high.

Pedestal Options at the Access Network

By: Johnny Hill

The Access Network—the point where the distribution network breaks off for the final drop to the customer home, present a variety of choices and challenges. The biggest debate at this location of the network is what level of environmental protection is needed.

Terminated Connector Performance: It’s More Than Just IL and RL

By: Johnny Hill

What is the problem?

There are many manufacturers of fiber optic patchcords, which provide for competitive, cost-effective pricing for the end-user of these products. As the product has been more and more commoditized, it is wrongly assumed that all patchcords will perform the same as long as a few given performance metrics are met. Most associate good insertion loss (IL) and return loss (RL) as the only recipe for a good patchcord and, because of this, the barrier to entry is small.

The FieldSmart Fiber Management Philosophy: “Reduce risk, headaches and cost”

The whole point of every component within a fiber management system—from the 125um cladding on fiber cable construction, cable jacketing, splitter packaging for outside plant, and the route paths within them, is to protect and reduce the risk of fiber damage. Period.

Don’t Build an Elephant to Kill an Ant

By: Johnny Hill

When you’ve been in the field for more than 90 years, like SureWest Communications, you’re bound to pick up a few things. You pick up about 250,000 Northern California customers and a reputation as a trail blazer in the fiber-to-the-premises world. Perhaps most importantly, you pick up some best practices. What follows are 11 insights the company has learned in the field.

Taking the Bite Out of Broadband

Johnny Hill, Clearfield’s COO, applies the Beta Partner TCO concept to passive connectivity and Clearfield’s approach to fiber management. The paper presents logical, cost-effective solutions, practices and methodologies for the deployment of fiber management across the entire passive network.

Meeting the Challenges of FTTx

Beta Partners, a telecommunications consulting firm located in Minneapolis, conducted a survey of broadband service providers. This whitepaper takes a look at the findings—- how are service providers reacting to the changing marketplace of FTTx and what are they doing to reduce the cost of broadband. The study introduces financial measures, including a TCO or Total Cost of Ownership, approach to network planning, implementation and management.