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Achieving a Connected World


Deployment of broadband infrastructure has reached a pivotal point. Networks are being built to last for generations and the level of connectivity is key to its success. During the 2021 BICSI Fall conference, Patrick McLaughlin, Chief Editor of Cabling Installation and Maintenance, interviewed Seán Adam, Vice President, Market Strategy and Innovation at AFL, on what he thinks it will take to Achieve a Connected World.


According to Adam, one of the biggest challenges is the availability of a skilled workforce. Due to the lack of technicians in the field, it’s important that manufacturers focus on providing solutions centered around ease, meaning easy-to-use, install, upgrade and maintain. The 90R Fusion Splicer, for example, was specifically designed to enable technicians in the field with its Bluetooth®-enabled cleaver and replaceable v-grooves.

Additionally, AFL’s Wrapping Tube Cable (WTC) based on Fujikura’s SpiderWeb Ribbon® (SWR®), was designed for ease of install and engagement, as the fiber can engage as both ribbon fiber and single fiber. Further, when coupled with the 90R splicer, there is an 89 percent decrease in the amount of time it takes to splice the same amount of fiber, thus facilitating installation and increasing engagement.

The second challenge is supply chain. Investing in capacity for fiber, cable and connectivity is crucial to achieving a connected world. It’s also necessary that manufacturers focus on improving manufacturing efficiency. AFL has succeeded in this by propelling new business systems and creating new ways in which customers can have better engagement experiences with us.

As the world continues to evolve and change, Adam suggests that we keep the following three pillars in mind to maintain a connected world: expandability, flexibility and accessibility. AFL has provided multiple solutions to address these pillars, such as our APEX® Fiber Optic Splice Closure. When used with SWR, fiber density is largely increased and the size of the handholes and duct work is decreased, which are all huge benefits to flexibility. Similarly, AFL has just released new cassettes for our ASCEND® platform, which addresses the ongoing need for expandability.

To learn more on achieving a connected world, check out the video here.

Read the first installment from the Generations Blog Series that Adam references here.