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What is a Fibre Optic Cable?

A fibre optic cable is a network cable that is designed to increase speed, bandwidth and reliability. This type of cable contains glass fibres inside an insulated casing which makes it incredibly durable and reliable. The increased durability and reliability of this type of cable makes it a cost-effective option in the long term too. Fibre optic cables are designed especially for long-distance, high-performance data communications and networking. They’re commonly used and support much of the world’s internet, telephone, entertainment and communication systems.  

How does fibre optic cabling work?

For a fibre optic cable to work, light must travel down the cable and bounce off the walls of the cable repeatedly. When this happens, the light particles create an internal mirror-like reflection. These light beams travel down the core of the cable which is the middle of the cable and glass casing. There is also another layer of glass wrapped around the core to keep the light signals inside. 

What are the types of fibre optic cables?

There are several types of fibre optic cables and installation methods including single-mode, multimode, air blown fibre, campus link, and PON and SPON builds. Single-mode fibre is designed to carry light only directly down the fibre in traverse mode and is most  suitable for longer distances and higher bandwidths. Multimode is ideal over small to medium distances for providing high bandwidth and speed. Airblown fibre optic cabling is a new form of cable that enables easy replacement of fibres, making it easier to upgrade our network and maintain the highest data speeds. 

What are the uses of fibre optic cables?

Fibre optic cables are most commonly associated with the internet, phone lines and telecommunications. They can also be used for networking, medical care, lighting and decorations, and automotive purposes. 

What are the benefits of fibre optic cabling?

There are plenty of benefits that come with fibre optic cables including greater bandwidth, faster speeds, longer distances and increased reliability. In comparison to copper cables, fibre optic cables are also more flexible, thinner and more robust. 

What is fibre optic cabling made of?

Fibre optic cables are made up of many thin strands of coated glass fibres.   

How are Fibre Optic Cables Installed?

Fibre optic cables can be installed indoors or outdoors using various types of installation methods. Installation processes will largely depend on the type of cable being used. Typically, outdoor cables could be buried, pulled or blown into conduit or innerduct, or installed aerially between poles. Whereas indoor cables may be installed in raceways, cable trays above ceilings and under floors, placed in hangers, pulled into conduit or innerduct, or blown through special ducts using compressed air. 

Do Fibre Optic Cables need to be straight?

Generally, fibre optic cables tend to perform best when they run straight. However, all cabling has a fibre bend radius which may differ depending on the different types and makes of cables. 

What are two critical factors for a successful installation of Fibre-Optic Cables?

There are many things that should be considered when installing fibre optic cables. However, it is arguably the most critical to consider cable pulling tension and bend radius first.

What is splicing? 

Splicing is a method of joining two fibre optic cables together. Splicing fibres is commonly used to rejoin fibre optic cables that have been accidentally severed or broken. Here at Birch Technical Services, we’re experts in splicing, testing and preventative maintenance. 

Why is preventative maintenance necessary for Fibre Optic Cabling? 

Preventative maintenance is essential for ensuring a long life span and to avoid power outages. A single dust particle on the core of a fibre can cause signal loss, so regular cleaning and preventative maintenance is highly recommended. 

Who to call for emergency network repairs and maintenance?

Whilst total outages on well installed and maintained networks are rare, these can occur. We have a dedicated maintenance team who are on call 24-hours a day, 7 days a week. 

Our number one aim is to minimise downtime for your business and to ensure your network is running efficiently. We use the latest equipment to find the fault quickly and use the very best core alignment fusion splicers to make the required repairs. Whilst we want to get you up and running quickly, we don’t want you to have to call us out again in a matter of days, so each repair will be thoroughly tested before reactivating the network.

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Why Choose Birch Technical Services?

Aside from being one of the only accredited FIA installers in the UK, Birch Technical Services have exceptional network and cabling, security and technical knowledge and expertise. Our team of engineers are all fully qualified, health and safety certified and trusted to deliver accurate, reliable advice.  

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