Verizon using innovative method for fiber installation

Innovative installation techniques are easing FTTH deployment in New York City.

By Donna Donnawitz
April 18, 2013

Capital costs are among the greatest barriers to installing fiber-to-the-home infrastructure. In many regions, finding a way to install fiber can be problematic because the cables have to be deployed in areas that are already used for other purposes. In many cases, cable trenches have to be made in or near roads, sidewalks and other public areas. While some efforts to install cables in sewer systems and other locations, most FTTH installations involve extensive construction efforts that are not only expensive, but disruptive to local residents. If you've ever lived near a road where they are digging cabling trenches, you'll know what I'm talking about. This could all change, at least in some areas, as Verizon recently got permission from New York City to try a new cabling installation technique that could ease FTTH deployment.

Looking at Verizon's new strategy
The need to dig deep and fairly wide trenches for fiber-optic cabling installation is a major issue, especially in areas like New York City, where high population densities make it difficult to complete construction processes without disrupting day-to-day activities. Verizon is working to overcome this through the use of micro-trenching. This strategy could have a major impact across the entire FTTH landscape in New York City. If micro-trenching proves successful, the practice would create enough space in small trenches for at least four telecoms to install wiring, enabling other telecoms to complete cost-efficient cabling installation and creating more competition in the region.

Rahul Merchant, chief information and innovation officer for New York City, explained that the new installation method should have a major impact on the city.

"Broadband is the lifeblood of many New Yorkers and businesses, fundamentally transforming the ways in which they interact with and thrive in the world-at-large," said Merchant. "Now we're extending that transformation to underserved areas across the five boroughs. Whether it's restoring service to storm-ravaged areas or extending it to new ones, the innovative micro-trenching pilot will allow the City to speed deployment of fiber optics while minimizing the impacts to the very communities it's helping to improve."

Easing FTTH deployment on multiple levels
Better trenching is not the only way to reduce costs in FTTH deployment. Using fiber to Ethernet media converters can also alleviate cost concerns. Compatibility issues can contribute to significant expenses in an FTTH network. Cost-effective media converters can enable organizations to improve interoperability and ease the entire FTTH installation process.

Perle has an extensive range of Managed and Unmanaged Fiber Media Converters to extended copper-based Ethernet equipment over a fiber optic link, multimode to multimode and multimode to single mode fiber up to 160km.


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