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DSM fiber optic materials

What’s on your fiber? Today, DeSolite® Supercoatings, DeSolite®, Cablelite® and Bufferlite® materials are the industry standards for fiber protection and identification worldwide. Around the globe, DSM is protecting network investments for the future.
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DeSolite® Supercoatings

Greater signal reliability and robust field performance is the objective of every fiber optic coatings. Of course, not all coatings are created equal. DeSolite® Supercoatings by DSM are the only fiber coatings that deliver outstanding field performance, microbend sensitivity, and signal reliability in even the most demanding applications.

DeSolite® Supercoatings protect today’s network investments with the following performance properties:

  • Superior low microbend performance, from -60ºC to 85ºC
  • Low attenuation
  • High reliability in temperature extremes, especially low-temperature environments

Microbending

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Today’s fiber optic network operators must address microbending, an ongoing challenge which occurs when random bends occur in the fiber axis resulting in small deformations and can cause attenuation and ultimately signal transmission loss. This occurs when fiber is forced onto cabling materials, fiber-to-fiber contacting points, or fiber being pressed on any rough surface.

DSM’s DeSolite® Supercoatings is engineered to significantly improve microbending sensitivity at the fastest processing speeds, ensuring the best economy of high speed production and superior attenuation performance. In standard basket-weave testing, DeSolite® Supercoatings display 90% less sensitivity to microbend attenuation as compared to alternative coating systems.

This is a performance advantage critical for today’s new FTTx designs, especially at the longer wavelengths of 1625nm. Improved performance is also demonstrated in temperature extremes, ensuring a robust solution with minimal signal attenuation especially in low temperature environments.

Field performance

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After optical fiber is deployed in the field, it will undergo external stress during its service life. This service stress will lead to the propagation of flaws on the surface of the optical fiber and potentially lead to a fiber break.

To reduce the occurrence of a break, optical fiber producers perform “proof testing” right after or during the fiber draw process, which involves exposing the fiber to a relatively low stress (typically 0.7 GPa) to ensure the fiber is robust and can tolerate stress in the field.

Dynamic fatigue testing is commonly used in the field to characterize fatigue behavior on each fiber production batch due to quick results. To protect fiber in the field DeSolite® Supercoatings was developed, delivering higher fiber fatigue resistance over older generation systems and alternative materials (when measured by the two point bend method).

Processing

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Optical fiber producers must produce consistent performing fibers at fast draw speeds in order to meet customer demand, while achieving maximum production efficiency. DeSolite® Supercoatings, developed by DSM, allow producers to increase processing speeds without significant changes in fiber properties.

Stable curing performance delivers a wider processing window which enables fiber producers to obtain comparable optical properties, even if they have multiple production sites, draw tower conditions, and/or designs.

Design flexibility

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When designing networks, operators are looking for cost effective solutions for deploying where space is limited. One of the most cost-effective solutions for access network ducts are high density compact cables produced with latest-generation optical fiber and coatings. DeSolite® Supercoatings are engineered for low microbend sensitivity and are able to deliver this low microbend performance even at reduced thickness.

The result is smaller diameter fiber, 200um versus the typical 250um fiber, which allows for increasing a cable’s fiber count by more than 50%. This leads to efficiency gains in network CapEx with more fiber being deployed in the existing duct infrastructure, versus the need to create new trenches.

Diffraction Analysis published study results at the 2011 FTTH European conference in Milan, in which the benefits of high density compact cables were analyzed for three regions in France and a financial gain was obtained for each scenario.

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