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Interlocking Plenum Armored Fiber Optic Cable: What it's all about?

Friday, Nov 6th

Fiber Optic cables can be utilized for many different applications. When it comes to essential data being transferred, such as internet service to an entire office building or communications between soldiers in a battlefield, it’s crucial that your cable can withstand the environment. Today we are taking a closer look at Interlocking Plenum Armored Fiber Optic Cable to find out what it’s all about.

What is it?
Defining Interlocking Plenum Armored Fiber Optic Cable.

Put simply, this type of fiber optic cable uses a special interlocking design that is armored to withstand harsh environments. This design eliminates the need to install a rigid conduit around the cable to meet building codes. Basically this cable is well packaged for harsh environment applications.

What about installation?
Explaining the different needs during the installation process.

Regular fiber optic cable is typically installed in an inner-duct (a special type of corrugated tube designed to protect the cable) so that it can pass certain building codes. That means that installing a regular fiber optic cable requires an extra step during installation which often translates to higher labor costs.  The cable needs to be specifically inserted into the inner-duct; which adds an extra step. Interlocking Plenum Armored cables don’t need an inner-duct.  The specialized design allows for the same if not better crush protection as the inner-duct and also offers more flexibility.

Is it better?
Detailing the benefits of Interlocking Plenum Armored Fiber Optic Cable:

  • It is flame retardant
  • It offers crush protection 7xs that of normal fiber optic cable
  • Able to withstand harsh environments
  • No need for rigid conduit during install process
  • Flexible, providing a higher bend radius

How do I decide?
Choosing Interlocking Plenum Armored Fiber Optic Cable or a Standard Fiber Optic Cable

First off, ask yourself if your application is one where additional cables will need to be added in the future? If you answer yes, consider a Standard Fiber Optic Cable.  Installation with an inner-duct may be a better option.  This will give you the ability to add more cables to the inner-duct at a later date.

If that doesn’t apply, then consider your environment.  If crush resistance and bend radius are concerns, then an Interlocking Armored Cable is probably the smarter option.

Also be sure to look at the big picture if price is a condition of your choice.  At first glance, Interlocking Armored Fiber Optic Cables are more expensive, but once you factor in the cost of the inner-duct needed and the additional labor time required, installing a Standard Fiber Optic Cable may end up costing more overall.

Still confused?  Our knowledgeable customer service representatives will work with you to get the cable that is best for your project when and where you need it. Give us a call at 800-431-3864 and we’ll be happy to help!