A Deeper Dive into Flex-Span® ADSS Cable Benefits
In the late 90s, AFL developed our Mini-Span® cable family, introducing the first single jacket ADSS cables in to the market. Now, with more than 20 years of experience manufacturing single jacketed ADSS cables, and with the advances in cable technology, AFL developed the Flex-Span® ADSS fiber optic cable family of products with the following characteristics:
- Small diameter to minimize ice/wind loading
- Lightweight to reduce pole loading/make ready
- Single jacket to expedite cable preparation
- Fiber counts from 12 up to 144
The Flex-Span cable designs are the perfect cable solution for aerial right-of-ways. With smaller and lighter cables, the customers will have more flexibility for their installations on short and long spans up to 1,000 feet. The cables can be easily installed in both supply and communication space, allowing the customers to minimize the very expensive cost of make ready.
Installation accounts for more than half of the cost of a fiber project. These design features of AFL’s Flex-Span cables reduce the installation cost:
- Faster cable/closure preparation due to the single jacket design
- Less expensive cable hardware due to the lightweight and small cable diameter
- Less make-ready cost (pole changes and pole guying) due to smaller cable sags and better cable clearance
With the new core configuration (5 tubes with 24 fibers each), Flex-Span cables can contain a total of 120 fibers in a very small diameter (<0.475”) while still maintaining the span length capability. Also, AFL has the capability to match cable diameters for different fiber counts to keep the same attachment hardware across the entire project. This feature allows customer to better manage their inventory and to improve maintenance logistics.
The current capabilities of our Flex-Span family are:
- Fiber counts for Flex-Span ADSS are 12 up to 144
- Operating temperature ranges from -40˚C to +70˚C
- Pole-to-pole span lengths range from 50 feet (15 meters) to over 1,000 feet (305 meters)
- Additionally, we are working to add a 288-fiber option to our Flex-Span family.