AFL launches ASCEND modular high density fiber system for data centers

Jan. 21, 2019
The ASCEND platform includes both fiber-optic trunk cable and patch cord assemblies.

At the 2019 BICSI Winter Conference (Jan. 20-24) in Orlando, FL, AFL, an international manufacturer of fiber-optic cable, equipment and accessories, is launching ASCEND, a modular high-density platform that the company says "sets the standard in larger and more technical data center environments. Consisting of fiber housings, cassettes and assemblies, the ASCEND platform transforms the status quo of current data center platforms and raises the level for future-proofing needs," contends AFL.

“Bandwidth demands will continue to grow and flexibility in networks will be critical,” explained Steve Polidan, general manager of AFL’s Optical Connectivity and Premise Cables division. “The ASCEND platform is designed to overcome today’s ever-changing network requirements and the entire product solution provides the flexibility and versatility needed in today’s fast-paced market.”

Per AFL, the "ASCEND fiber housings offer flexibility, functionality and ease-of-use. Available in 1RU, 2RU and 4RU sizes with densities of up to 144, 288 and 576 fibers, these fiber housings consist of front and back doors both hinged on the bottom. The back of the housing cover is removable for unobstructed access to all connector interfaces. With routing rings at the front of the trays, routing patch cords is easy, secured and organized.

Another key feature of the ASCEND platform is the versatile cassette design. Providing a wide range of options, the ASCEND cassette portfolio is one of the most comprehensive in the industry. The cassettes independently mount within the fiber management housings and trays allowing for ease of access and modularity. Cassette designs range from BASE-8 to BASE-24 and cover additional applications ranging from patch-thru connectivity to xWDM installation. Available in single-mode and multimode, ASCEND optical cassettes feature low loss MPO connectors and VFL-compatible shuttered LC adapters. Splice cassettes include 250 µm pre-terminated single fiber pigtails and can be spliced directly to loose or ribbon fiber cable. Splice cassettes are compatible with all BASE-12 ASCEND housings. Available in single-mode and multimode, fanout cassettes are pre-terminated plug and play breakout modules designed to transition a trunk cable into individual connector ports.

The ASCEND platform also includes both trunk cable and patch cord assemblies. Trunk cable assemblies feature AFL’s Microcore cable and the MTP PRO connector which allows for field-reversible polarity and gender with no housing removal, exposed fibers or loose points. Available in 12 to 144 fibers in BASE-8 and BASE-12 configurations, ASCEND trunk cable assemblies include an integrated cable mounting clip which eliminates the need for additional cable clamps, securely positioning the incoming cable and eliminating stress during installation. Patch cord assemblies are constructed with AFL’s Dual-Link cable and terminated with a field reversible LC Uniboot connector, minimizing the front-side cabling footprint and reducing the impact on airflow up and down the rack and between the racks.

The ASCEND platform is on display at BICSI Winter 2019 in Orlando, at AFL's booth #1033. Learn more at and follow the hashtag #ASCENDwithAFL on social media. Click here to view a product demonstration video.

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