Only 25% of the US had access to fiber optic internet service providers in 2020. But this is a market with considerable growth in it. A new Global Fiber-Optic Cable Market 2022-2028 report reveals the market size will grow by 6.4% over the next six years. This is no surprise given the advantages offered by fiber optic installations.
You may have heard that fiber optic cabling is better than traditional copper cabling in telecommunications – but what is fiber optic installation, and how can it benefit your business?
What does fiber optic cable do?
Fiber optic cables are made from long, thin glass or plastic strands. These strands transmit data using pulses of light, in contrast to traditional copper wires, which use electrical signals.
There are two main types of fiber optic cables:
Single-mode fiber cables – these have a very thin core, around eight to ten microns in diameter. They are used for long-distance data transmission, such as between cities.
Multi-mode fiber cables – these have a thicker core, around 62.50 microns in diameter. They are used for shorter distance data transmission, such as within buildings.
What are the advantages of fiber optic cable?
There are many benefits to using fiber optic cable, including:
- Lightweight: fiber optic cables are much thinner and lighter than copper cables, making them easier to work with and install.
- Low attenuation – signal loss is less likely with fiber optic cables.
- Electromagnetic interference – unlike copper wires, fiber cables are immune to EMI.
- High data transmission – ideal for computer networks and broadband internet connections
- High cable internet speeds – expect transmission up to 20 times faster than regular cable, at around 1 gigabit per second (Gbps) in comparison to standard 50 to 100 Mbps cabling.
- Better bandwidth provides faster download speeds in a fiber optic connection.
What is fiber optic installation?
There are various types of fiber optic installation, including:
- FTTP – fiber to the premises means fiber optic cable runs directly to your home or business premises.
- FTTH – fiber to the home is a type of connection where a fiber cable runs to a central point in your neighborhood before continuing to your home.
- FTTB is similar to FTTH but goes to a central point in your office building or apartment complex, before running to your individual office or apartment.
- FTTC – fiber to the curb is a type of connection where the fiber optic cable is run to a central point in your street, before reaching your property.
How is fiber optic connected to my house or business premises?
Let’s say you require a fiber optic installation to your business premises or to your home for your remote working Wi-Fi connection. What’s the exact process?
1. Site survey
A technician will need to survey the area to see what route the fiber optic cable will take and what type of installation is required.
2. Site prep work
Your technician will dig trenches or boreholes (depending on the route of the cable) and lay the conduit (pipes) for the cable. Alternatively, they may mount poles for an aerial installation.
3. Installing the fiber optic cables
With the conduit in place, the technician will install the fiber optic cable and connect it to your property. They could use either a blowing or pulling technique to install your cable into position before fusion splicing.
- Fiber optic blowing: compressed air is used to push the cable through the conduit.
- Fiber optic pulling: a winch or drum is used to pull the cable through the conduit.
4. Connecting your fiber optic network
The final step is to connect your property to the fiber optic network. This will usually involve installing an Optical Network Terminal (ONT) inside your property. The ONT will connect to a router so you can hook it up to your ethernet cable and begin using your fiber optic connection.
What are the challenges of a fiber optic network installation?
The fiber optic cable installation process can be a more complex process than copper cabling, which is why it should be left to professional installers. Some of the top challenges include:
Fiber optic cables are made of extremely thin plastic or glass fiber strands and must be handled with care to avoid damage to the cable jacket.
Knowing the cable bend radius
The cable bend radius is the minimum radius that the cable can be bent without damaging it. Depending on the route of your cable, you’ll need to factor in the fiber optic cable bend radius prior to installation.
Existing underground infrastructure
If you’re installing a new fiber optic cable, you’ll need to be careful not to damage any existing cables or equipment. This includes avoiding any obstacles while also ensuring that the new cable is properly secured.
Despite these challenges, fiber optic installation is becoming a necessity as the demand for high-speed internet increases. With the help of a professional installer, you can ensure your fiber optic cable is installed correctly and that you’re able to take advantage of all the benefits that fiber optics has to offer.
What is the price of your fiber optic cable installation?
The price of your fiber optic cable installation will depend on several factors, including the length of the cable, the type of installation, and the number of fibers being installed.
The overall cost could also be affected by the difficulty of the installation. If your cable needs to be installed in a difficult or hard-to-reach area, the price will likely be higher. Our team at The Network Installers can provide you with an accurate quote for your fiber optic installation project.
Arrange your fiber optic installation
You’ve now got all the answers to your main question: what is fiber optic installation? So, the next step is to assess if your current broadband speed is meeting the needs of your business. Are you looking for a more reliable connection? If so, The Network Installers are available to discuss your fiber optic installation in more detail. Get in touch to speak to our team of experts.