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PPC blog

Comparing 3 in-building fiber cable installation methods

Posted by Krista Tysco

A crucial step that every installer will negotiate during fiber cable installation in an apartment block or multi-story office building is to decide on the most appropriate way of getting the fiber cable from the basement of the building to each floor.

In new-build apartment blocks and commercial buildings, this process can often be fairly straightforward - and especially so if the architect has designed the building with fiber in mind and has included a microduct from the basement to each of the floors.

For the network operator the key step is deciding on the best method of getting the cable to each floor - whether that’s by blowing, pushing or pulling the fiber cable. Here we explore the pros and cons of each approach.

Topics: Fiber to the home, Pushable Fiber

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Pioneering the 4th Utility – Fiber to the Home

Posted by Dave Daly

In this post, we explore how you can future proof and differentiate a property through delivering a fiber solution, while also increasing customer satisfaction.

The Challenge of Delivering Fiber to Multiple Dwelling Units

Over half of the world's population lives in units of 100+. In cities this figure can be even higher. This concentration and variety creates a challenge for operators looking to install fiber to the home (FTTH) connections. Essentially, multiple dwelling units (MDUs) are like snowflakes - no two are the same, meaning that each one has to be handled as a separate, complex civil engineering project.

Adding to this complexity, the vast majority of these buildings were constructed before fiber networks were even thought of, meaning they aren't designed to accommodate standard fiber connections. 83% of US MDUs were built before 2000, and over half (52%) before 1980. So there is often no obvious way to route fiber to individual apartments.

Topics: Fiber to the home, Pushable Fiber, MDU

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Simplicity of Installation is the Key to Product Selection for FTTH

Posted by Dave Daly

If you are trying to decide on a product to include in your network design or installation and you have a choice between several products that meet your technical specifications  is price the only factor that will help you to make your decision?

While it can be tempting to prioritize price, it's also important to think ahead and look to your business' future. Therefore, an important factor to consider during your product selection for FTTH is the simplicity of your installation.

Simplicity

When it comes to fiber installation, it is commonly understood that you need specialized expertise (installing, splicing), and specialized equipment (splicers, blowers, trenching, etc.). The cost of these things is well known and considered to be part of doing business, and is often the decisive factor in how or if an FTTH installation goes forward.

Topics: Fiber to the home, Pushable Fiber

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Do you know how far you can bend your microduct and fiber?

Posted by Dave Daly

There is a limit to the bending ratio or tight diameter in a microduct or fiber cable - after which, the fiber starts to exhibit failure. The failure can be a slight increase in insertion loss or a "kink" in the fiber that creates a catastrophic effect.  

One of the challenges of installing fiber in the last drop of an FTTH network is knowing the overall distance and the amount of 90 degree angles you can have in the path you will be using. Distance and 90 degree turns create additional friction and add to the cumulative friction.

Topics: Fiber to the premises, Design and Install, Fiber to the home, Pushable Fiber

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Building Residential Fiber Networks Faster at a Lower Cost

Posted by Dave Daly

The broadband FTTH market is in its infancy in North America and very little attention has been paid to the last 150’ drop necessary to bring a low fiber count connection into customers’ homes. Currently a broadband operator’s fast ROI lies in business and multi-dwelling unit (MDU) applications. To date, the ROI model for single family units (SFU) doesn’t measure up.

Topics: Fiber to the home, Pushable Fiber, Costs/ROI

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Pushable fiber in the drop network - how to speed up your installation

Posted by Shaun Trezise


Pushable fiber can be installed quickly and cost-effectively as the fiber drop for the final few hundred feet of a network.

The beauty of pushable fiber is that less skilled labor and less expensive equipment are required.

Another option is pulling, which is typically used for longer distances. Unless the microduct already contains a pull-cord, it will first require the cord to be drawn into the duct, or a fish tape to be installed, both adding time to the install. Assuming a pull-cord exists, it will, of course, need to be removed for pushable applications.

Compared to blowing fiber, both of these approaches are more flexible in terms of the number of crew members and the logistics or access to the duct. Blowing fiber also requires expensive equipment, and takes time to set up and dismantle, limiting the number of installations possible in a day. In some cases, blowing equipment may not be permitted on-site for reasons of access, disruption and safety.

Topics: Design and Install, Fiber to the home, Pushable Fiber

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FTTH architecture selections - what should you choose?

Posted by Rick Haube


As the use of FTTx architectures grows in the MSO community, the selection of a specific delivery architecture and technology should be based on the total cost of ownership (TCO). As part of the TCO, the quality of experience and the short term "fit" can confuse the matter some. There seem to be a lot of discussions surrounding RFoG (RF over glass) and DPoE (DOCSIS provisioning over EPON), versus xPON (EPON, Turbo- EPON, GPON, or 10G-EPON). xPON has been reported as perhaps a bit more expensive in the short term but RFoG may also come with a high upgrade cost that could escalate the price, extending the TCO.

What to do?

With an HFC network running smoothly, for the most part, we are constantly faced with an increasing data consumption year over year - and this isn’t stopping soon. The network is in constant need of enhancements and the increasingly stressed bandwidth and performance requires ongoing adjustment. So we upgrade to DOCSIS 3.1, reduce node sizes and use every possible bit of bandwidth we have. It’s working! With deeper fiber and smaller nodes, the evolution of the network is preparing for a leap (not a jump) to FTTH.

Topics: Fiber to the home, Pushable Fiber

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Half year report - the 2014 global FTTH and pushable fiber market

Posted by Tom Carpenter

As we approach the halfway mark of 2014, I thought it worthwhile to share my views on the trends we are seeing in the FTTH and pushable fiber market globally.

Firstly, the market is growing compared to 2013, a view which is backed up by several industry market research papers. For example CRU's report found that global fiber installations are up 13% for the first quarter of the year. I can’t comment on whether this is happening across the board. However what I do know is that our shipments of Miniflex fiber cable and our pushable QuikPush range are up significantly everywhere we sell globally.

Topics: Fiber to the home, Pushable Fiber, Market trends

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City of Loma Linda deploys high speed fiber network with PPC

Posted by Shaun Trezise

New York and London, 10 June 2014, PPC, the inventors and producers of the world-leading range of patented Miniflex™ fiber cables, today announced that the City of Loma Linda in California has significantly reduced the installation time and cost of its high speed, municipality-wide fiber network by using its advanced products.

The Californian city has been able to lower deployment costs on the last mile of its Fiber to the Premises (FTTP) network by between 64-76%, from $50 to just $12-$18 per foot through pushable technology and micro trenching.

This has enabled it to roll-out the city-wide network within budget and tight timescales, benefiting the 21,000 residents and reinforcing its reputation as a healthcare center. The City has five major hospitals and a healthcare focused graduate university with 15,000 medical, dental, and allied healthcare students. Up to 100,000 people visit the city every day to be treated and it is the regional center for veterans, trauma and children’s care, covering a fifth of California.

Topics: Pushable Fiber

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