20 June, 2019
Fujikura Ltd. (President & CEO: Masahiko Ito) is pleased to announce that British Telecommunications plc (BT), the largest telecommunications operator in the UK, has awarded it contracts for the supply of a new type of ribbon fiber cable, "Air Blown Wrapping Tube CableTM (AB-WTCTM) *3 ". AB-WTC has been developed by Fujikura using its "Spider Web RibbonTM (SWRTM) *1" fiber ribbon technology. SWR features a bonded 12 core optical fiber ribbon and enables significant cable performance advantages over other ribbon technologies and traditional tube-based cable designs *2.
Deployment of Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) and 5G technology is driving the global rollout of large capacity optical networks. The FTTH Market in EU countries is expecting significant growth in the coming years, as the latest forecast data stated that FTTH/B penetration in 39 EU countries will reach 263 million homes and businesses by 2025 *4. Following this trend, BT plans to build a FTTH network across the UK enabling three million homes and businesses by the end of 2020 and ten million homes and businesses by the mid-2020s. AB-WTC and ribbon fiber fusion splicers will help BT accelerate its network rollout while achieving significant reduction in installation time and cost.
Fujikura is in discussions with a number of other customers in Europe regarding potential deployment of AB-WTC in their networks. The company is planning for significant expansion of its business across Europe (where air-blown cables are already well established) in addition to the North American market where WTC is already prevailing. Additional AB-WTC cables are already in development with increased performance and these will be launched in the market as they become available. Fujikura will continue its proud tradition of leveraging its “Tsunagu Technologies” to develop new innovative products that enable the society of the future.
Air Blown Wrapping Tube Cable (AB-WTC)
- Loose tube cable is well known as the conventional air blown optical fiber cable in the market. It requires fibers to be spliced individually. AB-WTC reduces splicing time drastically compared to loose tube type cable because it uses 12 fiber SWR and enables the user to splice 12 fibers at one time.
- AB-WTC uses 200μm fibers resulting in smaller diameter and lighter weight than loose tube cables. The smaller diameter is much more economical on duct space and higher fiber counts can be achieved.
- AB-WTC is fully compatible with legacy cable designs. The existing mass fusion splicer, jacket stripper and cleaver can be used for splicing AB-WTC with other cable types.
*1Spider Web Ribbon (SWR) is Fujikura’s original product name of 12 fibers intermittency optical ribbon fiber.
The structure of intermittency has the feature of both ribbon fiber and single fiber. Its flexibility can contribute to reduce cable diameter and dense fiber packing.
- *2Air-Blown is one of the optical fiber cable installation method. Compressed Air propels Optical Fiber Cable though the duct and it is well-known approach.
- *3Wrapping Tube Cable (WTC) is the name of Ultra High Density Optical Cable using SWR. In addition, Full Dry Structure, Stripe Ring-Marking, SZ bunching is applied to WTC so as to achieve easy installation and fiber identification.
- *4IDATE for FTTH Council EUROPE 2019