Telecom and Data

Building data centres better and faster with Nexans’ Optical Fibre Assembly service

Mike Connaughton, RCDD, CDCD Sep 2, 2019

Data cables

Time has never been more important for data centres and their construction cycles have never been this short. Today, some data centres can be built in just 6-9 months – compared to 12-18 months only a few years ago. The reason is simple: if you are running an IT, telecom or a digital business where physical infrastructure is critical for core operations, whenever it’s not working, you lose money and maybe even customers.

To support our clients in this race for speed and efficiency, Nexans developed an Optical Fibre Assembly Service that allows data centres to get up and running faster and smoother than ever before.

How optical fibre assembly works

The traditional process of fibre optic cable termination can be long and complicated: an installer will purchase reels of cable and boxes of connectors for setup. Each cable will be installed and cut to length, and then a technician will install connectors onto each strand of each end of every cable.  Then the terminated cable needs to be tested to assure that the results are acceptable. This usually takes at least several hours per cable.

The problem with this approach is that it’s too time-consuming for respecting a tight construction schedule of a data centre. Furthermore, since skilled labour is critical for connector terminations, that time is also more expensive at the job site.

Using the Nexans Optical Fibre Assembly Service, each cable is cut to the specified length and a connector pre-installed onto the ends under factory-controlled conditions that ensure the quality and reliability of the termination. Installation time at the data centre is cut substantially as the cables are delivered pre-terminated.

It’s a simple, efficient, ‘plug-and-play’ solution: all data centre designers have to do is tell us what lengths of cable they need, and Nexans provides custom-made assemblies with connectors already attached for an easy install. An online tool helps them create this assembly description.

Who can benefit?

The service has been available for over 10 years for Nexans’ customers in the US and EMEA regions – and we have recently launched the production of the pre-terminated fibre assembly in our facilities in China.

The solution is designed for data centres of any size – but hyperscale and cloud customers will find it particularly appealing, as, with hundreds of thousands of fibres in play, their connection requirements are substantially more significant than the norm. The Nexans Optical Fibre Assembly Service also helps installation companies: because no on-site termination is needed, they can use a wider range of staff to complete the installation process, while benefiting from higher cable performance and reliability and lower total cost of ownership.

The service does rely on the data centre designer knowing the exact length of the cable run required, but that is typical for larger data centers. However, in cases where greater flexibility is required it is possible to supply assemblies pre-terminated at one end only, so that the other end can be cut to length on site.

The competitive assembly advantage

Users of the Nexans Optical Fibre Assembly Service can build data centres in less time – while generating more revenue.

Nexans’ products are designed to meet a range of global standards. We help our customers comply with global Ethernet and energy standards.  And because of our global manufacturing, we also help them to meet local building standards from a range of cities and countries: from London to New York to Shanghai.

The Nexans Optical Fibre Assembly Service can simplify, streamline, and save money throughout the process of building your data centre.

Contact Nexans Data Center Solutions to discuss how we can help set your business for success. 

About the author

Mike Connaughton, RCDD, CDCD

Mike joined Nexans in 2008 as the Product Line Business Manager for fiber optic cable in the US. He is currently the Market Segment Manager for Nexans Data Center Solutions. Mike received his BSEET degree from Wentworth Institute of Technology (Boston, MA) in 1990 and has been involved in fiber optic cable engineering ever since. He has been a Registered Communications Distribution Designer (BICSI) since 1997 and a Certified Data Center Designer (CNet) since 2014. Additionally, he has participated in fiber related standardization meetings with TIA, ICEA, ANSI, SMPTE and IEEE. Mike is currently living in North Carolina with his wife and 3 boys where they still root for their Boston sports teams.

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