Innovation From Every Corner of the Industry: The 2023 Cabling Innovators Awards

Oct. 10, 2023
Professional development, jobsite efficiency, and fault managed power feature prominently among cabling innovation honorees.
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Throughout the nine years Cabling Installation & Maintenance has celebrated accomplishments in the information and communications technology (ICT) industry through the Cabling Innovators Awards, the program has reflected a combination of emerging technologies, dynamics within the trade, and ingenious means of making the jobsite more efficient. The 2023 Cabling Innovators Awards is no exception, and a look at this year’s honorees provides perspective on the ICT industry’s current state as well as its direction.

This article contains a complete list of this year’s 47 honorees, with brief descriptions of each. Other coverage on cablinginstall.com highlights trends among this year’s group of innovators, including the emergence of fault-managed power as an innovative technology; the presence of professional development, training, and education in this year’s program; and the fact that testing remains a paramount part of the cabling-system deployment process.

The awards program recognizes organizations and people who drive the ICT industry forward. It awards ingenuity and innovation wherever it is found in the value chain of cabling-system specification, design, installation, and administration.

Our judging panel comprises industry professionals with in-the-field experience. The panel evaluated each entry based on the following six criteria.

  • Innovative approach to product, system, program or project design and implementation
  • Value to the user, which can be measured by qualities including return on investment, loss prevention, or business-efficiency gains
  • Sustainability, characterized by overall eco-friendliness, long-term value, or lifecycle cost-effectiveness
  • Meeting a defined need as a well-conceived and well-executed initiative that fully meets specific user requirements
  • Collaboration, which can include communication and cooperation throughout the value chain through which the entry was developed, produced, procured, or deployed
  • Impact, recognized as the difference that an innovation makes on the professionals involved, on the productivity of its ultimate users, or on society as a whole

Based on our judges’ evaluations, worthy applicants are recognized as having achieved Silver, Gold, or Platinum status for their innovations. Recipients of Cabling Innovators Awards silver-level honors have shown marked improvement over previous methods, approaches, or use of systems and products. Gold-level awards are earned by organizations whose innovations are judged to be excellent, and whose benefits are clear. Each gold-level innovation makes a substantial improvement over previous methods employed, approaches taken, or products and systems used. Platinum awards have been judged to be superb innovations, characterized by a groundbreaking approach to meeting a need, or establishing a new level of performance, efficiency, ease-of-use, and other beneficial qualities.

Following are the 2023 Cabling Innovators Awards platinum honorees.

Belden’s Fault-Managed Power System (FMPS) Cables are designed and UL-certified for Class 4 circuits to safely send high amounts of power over long distances, allowing IoT devices to be placed in locations that support top performance, regardless of local power source availability.

Belden introduced the industry’s first UL-certified Class 4 cable and has now added the industry’s first UL-certified Class 4 hybrid cable to its portfolio as well. The copper/fiber construction of Belden’s FMPS Hybrid Cables transmits power and data over long distances in a single cable run, saving installation time, reducing installation complexity and simplifying cable stock.

With the release of the 2023 National Electrical Code® (NEC), Class 4 circuits allow the industry to support power delivery with the equivalent safety of existing Class 2 circuits and the added advantage of higher power levels and across longer distances.

Because Class 4 systems are just as safe as—if not safer than—Class 2 and Class 3 systems, these cables can be installed by the same integrators and contractors that install Category cabling and PoE cabling.

CommScope’s Constellation edge-based network platform helps facility and network managers create a more efficient, capable and adaptable power/data infrastructure for tomorrow’s device-dense, edge-based networks. Streamlined and modular, it dramatically simplifies the time, cost and complexity needed to deliver reliable power and data.

Constellation combines Class 4 power (fault managed power), enhanced powered fiber and ceiling-based convergence points (CPs) in an easy to deploy star topology that reduces the need for skilled labor. Supporting converged and segmented networks, AC and DC applications and a variety of connectivity options, the platform enables customers to easily evolve as their technologies and needs change. By reducing the amount of equipment, copper and energy requirements, Constellation is also more responsible and sustainable long-term solution.

Eaton’s RJ45 pass-through plugs allow installers to insert wires through the connector and out the front for better alignment. Installers then crimp and trim the wires. This method decreases assembly time for custom length Cat 6 cables and offers better performance than standard RJ45 plugs. There are two types of pass-through plugs available: UTP (unshielded twisted pair) and FTP (foil twisted pair). To enable inspection of the connections, pass-through plugs for UTP cable have an entirely clear body and pass-through plugs for FTP cable have a clear underside.

All of the pass-through RJ45 plugs have a staggered nose pattern to help reduce near-end crosstalk (NEXT), ensuring clear signal transmission. FTP plugs have foil shielding that helps prevent line noise interference from electromagnetic and radio sources.

The pass-through plugs work with most RJ45 crimping tools. The UTP plugs are compatible with 24-26 AWG UTP Cat6 cables. FTP plugs are compatible with 24-26 AWG FTP and F/UTP Ca t6 cables. The Cat 6 cable can be made of either solid or stranded conductors.

InfiniRack from Enconnex offers what the company describes as “infinite possibilities” and endlessly customizable options to data center users who want a new, modern, technologically superior cabinet. The product’s development follows years of learning customers’ needs and pain points with cabinets. InfiniRack is configured-to-order; there is no standard unit. “The standard is what the customer makes it,” Enconnex says. InfiniRack offers literally millions of configurations to meet customers’ exact needs.

Dual power distribution unit (PDU) channels are integrated into the frame’s rear corners, allowing for recessed PDU mounting and maximizing access to rack-mounted equipment. This configuration minimizes the possibility of a PDU getting in the way of rack-mounted equipment in 600-mm-wide cabinets. The cabinet’s PDU mounting brackets accommodate most standard PDU heights, allowing for toolless mounting and easy adjustment.

Finger-style cable managers are distributed in 1U increments and are available in short or long options. A telescoping adjustable horizontal cable trough in the cabinet’s 800-mm-wide version provide a front-to-rear cable pathway.

With a static load rating of 4000 pounds and dynamic load rating of 3000 pounds, InfiniRack comes standard with four heavy-duty 2.5-inch swivel casters and leveling feet. Airflow features include brush-sealed openings in the top and bottom panels, an optional air dam kit and, in the 800-mm version, five openings in the equipment rails for cable passthrough.

Fluke Networks’ Certified Cabling Test Technician (CCTT) program, which has graduated more than 10,000 individuals, provides training for technicians certifying and troubleshooting installed twisted-pair and fiber-optic cabling systems.

“Customers are more frequently requiring certification for technicians to be hired for some or all their projects,” Fluke Networks said when describing the CCTT program. “In a recent study by Fluke Networks, 67% of respondents report that CCTT certification was required on all or some of their jobs. And the 2022 salary survey revealed that CCTT technicians earn up to 27% more than non-certified technicians.”

More than 90% of those who responded to Fluke Networks’ survey said the BICSI continuing education credits they received from the CCTT course were important to them, and the program increased their understanding of cabling and cable testing, as well as making them better at troubleshooting.

Leviton’s Front-Loading QuickPort UTP Patch Panel offers a global solution for dense racks and cabinets with an easy and efficient way to add network connections without network downtime, using an innovative front-loading bezel. Installers can carry out terminations from either the rear or the front of the rack or cabinet; the bezels allow for the installation of jacks from the front side to add flexibility to network deployments. Then moves/adds/changes work can be completed from the front side of the panel, eliminating disruption of surrounding cables and minimizing the potential for network downtime or damage.

The panel’s benefits include installation flexibility via the front- or rear-termination capability; speedy moves/adds/changes with minimal impact on surrounding cables; two cable-management mounting bars for installer flexibility; support for North America and EMEA grounding and bonding requirements; easy port mapping capability to mimic switches with vertical numbering; and plastic-free, 100% recyclable Sustainably Smart Packaging.

The Front Loading QuickPort UTP Patch Panel is compatible with all QuickPort connectors, and it fits all industry-standard racks and cabinets.

The nCompass team of Legrand and Superior Essex offers Extended Distance (XD) Cabling Systems, which they describe as “the next generation of cable connectivity. It’s an innovative and dynamic system that exceeds industry standards, capable of carrying high power and data distances further than 100M. With the ability to exceed the current TIA 568.2-D standards, there is no longer a need for expensive workarounds due to distance constraints.”

XD carries up to 10-Gbit/sec (10G) or 5-Gbit/sec (1G) data and 100W power beyond the current TIA standard distance limitations; and supports up to 802.3bt devices, 4k cameras, wireless access points, PoE lighting, and everything in between. This flexibility gives you the capability to meet the unique connectivity requirements of your enterprise and enables you to create an efficient, dynamic environment that’s both customizable and easy to manage.

This copper cabling system is UL verified for Extended Distance applications. The performance exceeds TIA standards and was tested using BERT (Bit Error Rate Testing) to ensure it’s device agnostic. The only solution on the market that is third-party verified and backed by a limited lifetime warranty. BERT is the only valid test to check how far a signal will transmit. For security cameras and other lower bandwidth devices, we can go even further. The XD system eliminates the need for investment in additional Telecom rooms, power injectors, media extenders, or other equipment because of obstacles or distance constraints that up to 10% of installs can run into.

The Panduit Fault Managed Power System is a remote power delivery system that allows systems integrators to provide power to wireless systems. It can remotely power electrical devices such as remote radios, small cells, security cameras, access-control systems, and indoor as well as outdoor distributed antenna systems (DAS). Panduit says its fault managed power system “is ideal for larger venues or complex installations that require centralized power management, and is designed to comply with UL 1400 standards for a safer, easy-to-install power delivery system that provides significant time and cost savings to the user.”

Alongside standard communications cabling, the Panduit Fault Managed Power System can provide remote power over standard multi-conductor cables without conduit or the need for separation; this capability simplifies equipment installation, increases deployment speed, and significantly reduces deployment costs. “The system is scalable, with a hot-swappable configuration, allowing it to grow with rising wireless demands,” Panduit adds, describing the system as “a safe, efficient, reliable, and practical remote power delivery system that will go the distance.”

The system’s patented technology transports power through a pulse current waveform. The Panduit Fault Managed Power System comprises two main components: the power source and the power converter.

The SmartZone Overhead Power Distribution (OPD) System from Panduit tackles the historically inefficient, time-consuming, and costly nature of distributing power overhead. SmartZone OPD combines the advantages of existing busway and whip methods, while eliminating its disadvantages. “Safe and efficient, OPD is the best answer available to distribute overhead power,” Panduit says. “Simply put, OPD is cost-effective, by lowering the cost of ownership versus existing solutions; flexible, containing easy-to-add segments; safer, because the connection-ground connects before power; and fast to deploy, providing a significant reduction in installation time.”

Available in configurations that serve up to 4 cabinets or up to 8 cabinets, SmartZone OPD comprises the Power Feed Module, which distributes power from the building breaker panel to the system’s other modules; the Power Extension Module, which takes power from the Power Feed Module and extends it to the Power Distribution Module without breakers; the Power Distribution Module without breakers, which takes power from the Power Extension Module and distributes it to distant outlet housings (5 through 8); and the Power Distribution Module with Breakers, which takes power from the Power Feed Module and distributes it to nearby outlet housings (1 through 4).

The SmartZone Cloud Software platform from Panduit is an enterprise web-application hosted in the cloud that combines power and environment monitoring along with asset and connectivity management and cabinet access. It tracks critical infrastructure resources and provides visual representation of a rich set of asset attributes, connectivity, space availability, and power and environmental resources, to ensure that an organization’s digital infrastructure supports mission-critical applications and enables effective optimization of resources in the data center.

When describing the platform and its value to users, Panduit explains, “As companies continue to shift and expand IT workloads in a distributed and hybrid digital infrastructure, data center operations have a critical role in securing the agility and continuity to keep the business relevant in the digital world. Having a complete understanding of power, environmental, asset utilization, and connectivity is even more important in this dynamic environment. This makes digital infrastructure management tools, in conjunction with existing system software management tools, critical to support the changing needs of your data center. Maintaining real-time monitoring, dashboard visualization, alarm notification and reporting of key attributes across assets, power, environmental and connectivity, is a vital step in this evolution. Panduit’s Next Generation Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) solution provides accurate, automated and centralized visibility into the digital infrastructure that ensures stakeholders to achieve service-oriented goals. It enables you to make informed decisions to meet the demanding needs around capacity planning, remote management, and end-to-end service level agreements. This means that real-time information about your power, space and asset usage, environmental conditions, connectivity and cabinet access is now at your fingertips to provide complete data center infrastructure management. Whether you are building a new data center, looking to better manage your existing one, hosting your IT infrastructure with a colocation provider or expanding it into multiple edge sites, Panduit has a solution: SmartZone Cloud.”

Mounting hardware in a network rack can be a difficult, time-consuming, and sometimes even dangerous task for IT technicians. To solve these problems the PATCHBOX invented the /dev/mount - a smart cage nut alternative that holds equipment securely in place before the hex nuts are fastened.

Unlike with conventional cage nuts, no sharp edges need to be touched by technicians and no tools are required when mounting or dismounting a /dev/mount. Simply snap-in the /dev/mount and tighten the hex nuts with your hands. The /dev/mount consists of one piece and comes with long reversible hex nuts that can be used from both sides no matter how they are held, making them stress-proof, precise, and friendly to use.

By using PATCHBOX's /dev/mount, the time needed to mount hardware is significantly reduced, as the installation process is faster and therefore more cost-effective. Due to the design, only two /dev/mount are needed per rack unit, whereas normally four cage nuts are needed. Unlike conventional cage nuts, the /dev/mount has easier handling and is less likely to slip out of your hand and end up on the floor or underneath or within the rack – this leads to less trash and fewer reorders of more cage nuts.

Remee Wire & Cable, Mobilitie and VoltServer provided a Digital Electricity™ (DE) solution for a large municipal transportation agency. VoltServer, the developer of DE technology, provided its equipment to power the DAS radios for the metropolitan rail system to Mobilitie, the 3rd party operator and owner of the system infrastructure, who also installed the equipment. Remee Wire & Cable was selected by Mobilitie to provide its PowerPipe™ cabling solution for this installation, which was designed and approved for use with VoltServer’s DE equipment.

The control equipment for the rail system needed the capability to carry thousands of watts of power over thousands of feet to power the radios installed throughout the system. The installation would involve the transmission of data and power from equipment stations throughout the tunnels of these transit systems.

VoltServer’s patented Digital Electricity™ system was selected by Mobilitie for this project. VoltServer invented DE, a patented methodology, for the safe transmission of power up to 2km. This innovative technology offers the power and distance capabilities of traditional AC distribution but with the safety characteristics inherent with low voltage power distribution. It delivers significantly more power and at greater distances than PoE or Class 2 infrastructure while using the same low-voltage wiring practices and pathways. It was the perfect solution for powering the DAS radios throughout the tunnel system.

Mobilitie was chosen as a third-party operator to install, own and operate the DAS and fiber infrastructure needed. With its experience working in tunnels, such as with Seattle Sound Transit, Mobilitie was the ideal organization for this transit project.

Remee Wire & Cable, as an approved cable manufacturer for use with VoltServer’s DE system, was one of the available supplier options to provide cabling for the rail project. Remee was chosen by Mobilitie because of the company’s ability to meet NFPA 130 requirements for jacketing in a tunnel environment. Remee had already been working on similar NFPA 130 cabling solutions for its customers and had the expertise and capability to provide the same certification for this project. Remee was selected to provide its PowerPipe™ cable for the DE applications, running cable from the various stations to remote locations along the tunnels. Not only was Remee able to meet Mobilitie’s critical timelines, but they went above and beyond typical requirements for a project like this.

SENKO’s SN-MT16 connector is innovating hyperscale data center connectivity by offering optimized densification, simplified network build, future-proofing capabilities, ultra-low loss, and other benefits.  The connector boasts an exceptional packing density, accommodating 3,456 fibers per 1RU in patch panels. This high-density design optimizes space utilization within data centers. Furthermore, it simplifies network build by eliminating the need for cassettes and sliding trays. With the SN-MT16 Connector, deployment times are reduced, fewer connectors are needed in the link, and the overall build process becomes more streamlined.

It supports transceivers available for 4 x 800G. This capability allows data centers to keep pace with increasing bandwidth demands. With the SN-MT16 Connector, data centers can confidently scale their operations and adapt to evolving network requirements. The SN-MT16 Connector offers an ultra-low insertion loss of less than 0.35dB per mated connector pair, guaranteeing repeatable and reliable links. Its high-performance MT ferrules and alignment pins further improve reliability, ensuring stable connections and optimal network performance.

It features a push-pull boot, facilitating fast and effortless insertion and removal. Its flex angle boot provides superior bend protection and strain relief. The different keys on the upper and lower surfaces of the connector ensure repeatable and clear alignment upon insertion into the adapter, simplifying installation and reducing the risk of misalignment. It also incorporates multi-port shuttered adapters, offering increased ingress protection and enhancing laser safety for users. In addition to its performance benefits, the SN-MT16 Connector embraces sustainability by utilizing up to 67% less plastic. This eco-friendly design reduces the environmental footprint, aligning with the industry's growing commitment to sustainability.

In 2022, Softing Inc. launched the WireXpert 500, cable tester for cable certification of structured cabling. The WireXpert 500 solved two key customer challenges, the expensiveness of cable certification equipment and that cable contractors often certify (test) the cables after installation in 1-person teams.

Softing lauched the WireXpert 500, licensed for cable certification of any cable type up to CAT 6 and CAT 6A recognizing that CAT 7 and CAT 8 are rare, and that there is no need for customers to pay for this capability if never used. So the company launched a scaled down certifier, with all of the certification standards, but without rarely used cable types.

Regarding the second challenge, Dual Control System solves it by having graphical screens on both testers, at both ends of the cable. A large cable contractor had multiple critical jobs going on in parallel. The cable contractor was short staffed, and had to send out personnel in 1-person teams to get the jobs done. With the launch of the WireXpert 500, the cable contractor was able to purchase two sets of WireXpert 500 for the same price as a single cable certifier kit from others. This is a game changer by itself, but further more, while on the project, cable testing efficiency was increased by 50% due to the Dual Control System feature.

Standards are the backbone of ICT. While the adoption of industry-standard practices and principles has always been essential to ensure compliance, performance and the support of future applications, exploding data rates and the need for reliable network performance make it even more important for manufacturers, network designers, installers and other ICT professionals to understand and implement the latest standards.

Recognizing that many users find standards information to be confusing, hard to find and difficult to stay up to date on changes, the TIA’s Fiber Optics Technology Consortium (FOTC) has created the FOTC Standards Explorer, a free online database that serves as a resource for anyone who wants to learn more about multimode and single-mode media, infrastructure, and application standards.

The Standards Explorer supports a complete library of IEEE 802.3 singlemode and multimode applications. The web resource is easy to navigate with an unparalleled collection of pertinent application summary information, network interface descriptions, optical fiber cabling characteristics and key application capability information. Content on the Standards Explorer is updated as Standards and projects evolve.

The Standards Explorer’s next phase, which will be released in Q4 2023, will cover TIA media and infrastructure standards.

The FOTC’s goals with the Standards Explorer are to increase Standards awareness, provide resource accessibility to all companies and individuals and support compatible network architectures and cabling infrastructure deployments between all users across all platforms. The information on the Standards Explorer will aid designers with planning, consultants with understanding emerging technologies, installers with best practices, end users with cabling specification decisions, and manufacturers with product compliance.

The FOTC has long been recognized as a source of reliable, peer-reviewed, vendor-neutral information concerning optical fiber networks and associated technologies. FOTC’s membership consists of leading fiber optic cable, component and electronics manufacturers committed to advancing faster and more efficient ICT solutions. The consortium’s mission emphasizes optical fiber media, testing, application and technology education through development of white papers, webinars and other learning resources and participation in industry conferences. By bringing current standards information to the industry in a free, easily accessible format, the FOTC hopes to make it easier for its constituents in the evolving deployment of fiber-based networks.

Following are the 2023 Cabling Innovators Awards gold honorees.

AEM Precision Cable Test has always strived to provide ICT professionals, system integrators and network owners with field test solutions that take a different approach to providing exceptional value to the end user by combining what would typically require three to four different pieces of test equipment to achieve what we provide in a single multifunction test solution.  This not only provides users with a faster ROI for their test equipment investment, but it also allows them to offer new lines of revenue, but providing testing capabilities that span the installation to implementation phase of a project.

On May 23, 2023, AEM announced further expansion of the multifunction test platform with the release of Singlemode and Multimode Optical Time Domain Reflectometer (OTDR) test adapters, as requested by the end user community.  Current users of both TestPro and the Network Service Assistant (NSA) can expand their current test platform by simply adding this test adapter.

The company explains, “As we embarked on this project, a primary design requirement was that all OTDR circuitry had to be supported within our small form factor test adapter, as requiring the user to purchase another test platform to support OTDR test capability was simply not an option. AEM’s engineering team achieved a successful milestone in design, by meeting the objective to keep all circuitry needed to support this sophisticated measurement technology within our small form factor test adapters, to allow users to expand the test platform for which they have already made an investment.”

The Singlemode and Multimode OTDR test adapters give technicians the ability to easily pinpoint the location of broken fiber or other loss events causing an optical loss test to fail.  When used with TestPro, which already provides Tier 1 fiber optic certification, users can additionally achieve Tier 2 fiber optic certification within the same test platform they certify 4-pair copper cabling, Single Pair Ethernet, validate link speed and PoE load, and even perform both wired and wireless network connectivity testing and troubleshooting.  When used with the Network Service Assistant, which provides loopback fiber optic testing, users can now pinpoint a fiber optic loss event within the same test platform they perform Certi-lite testing on 4-pair cabling, validate link speed and PoE load, and even perform both wired and wireless network connectivity testing and troubleshooting.

Users can deploy IP devices up to 1000m over a single pair with Altronix PACE1KRT Long Range Ethernet Adapters. This innovative kit provides seamless network transmission over two conductors in hard-to-reach locations such as elevator communications, citywide surveillance, HVAC applications and other industrial environments.

Another benefit of requiring only one pair for transmission is a reduction of stiffness in that cable—making these devices ideal for situations where cables need to be as flexible as possible and in other hard-to-reach locations. This extended distance (10x standard Ethernet cabling) greatly increases the potential installations for PoE devices.

Pace1KRT Long Range Single Pair Ethernet Adapters is powered via PoE/PoE+ from any PoE midspan (30W), such as the Altronix NetWay® series. Pace1KRT includes the Pace1KR Receiver and Pace1KT Transceiver and is backed by a lifetime warranty.

Amphenol Network Solutions' Lightguide Interconnect Network Chassis (LiNC) panel is a sustainable and cutting-edge solution for managing multi-fiber networks with its innovative approach of a high-density rapid-deployment end-to-end multi-fiber solution.

The LiNC panel has a high-density chassis that supports up to four integrated spools, and with the option of ready-to-use 12/24F MPO breakout modules integrated, there is up to 200 feet of fiber ready to deploy. The product's key features include its ability to be mounted in a 19" or 23" rack or cabinet, up to 48 SC or 96 LC breakout ports, and up to four 12f and 24f MPO LiNC breakout modules per chassis.

Four individual MPO trunk cables are housed on spools, allowing users to pay out whatever length is needed, reducing inventory to a few standard part numbers. This feature also reduces cable congestion and space claims caused by excess slack storage and trunk cables.

Trunk spools are attached to the chassis with magnets – a first in the industry and a step forward in ease of use and value.

This panel eliminates the need for precise measurements reducing truck rolls and technician time which not only streamlines installation but also minimizes potential errors and delays.

The LiNC panel is also eco-friendly and provides lifecycle cost-effectiveness. It minimizes waste by design, and utilizes longer length fiber spools made from recyclable materials. Additionally, customers can order only what they need, reducing unnecessary expenses and waste.

Before the creation of Belden Inc's OptiTuff Mini Fiber Cable, raised floors in data centers and FTTx and POL/PON applications were constrained by existing fiber cable configurations … with the possibility of sacrificing performance to get the cable into place. OptiTuff Mini Pre-Terminated Fiber Assemblies utilize advanced, ruggedized thermoplastic material as a cost-effective, top-quality alternative to traditional metal armored cable.

OptiTuff Mini Pre-Terminated Fiber Assemblies are ready for installation as soon as they arrive on the jobsite, while featuring all the benefits of OptiTuff Mini Fiber Cables. These benefits include a smaller diameter to support space savings in high-density installations, lighter weight and anti-kink properties to make pulling fast and easy, and increased flexibility compared to metal armored cables: small bend radius for high-density raceway or tray installation. Other benefits are: high crush resistance and durability to eliminate the need for conduit and maintain reliability and no grounding kit necessary, which results in material and labor cost savings

The pre-terminated assemblies can also withstand any installation environment, bouncing back after being placed under very heavy weight. This distinctive set of characteristics makes the assemblies an optimal solution for projects requiring easy-to-install, pre-terminated fiber, including data centers, enterprise LAN environments, hospitality, gaming and casinos, etc.—with no grounding or conduit required.

Brady’s M710 Label Printer is “the clear choice for large or small cabling jobs,” the company says. “With print speeds of 3” ips, it’s lightning fast—outshining the competition and outperforming users’ expectations when it comes to the need for speed. It also exceeds in durability. With a MIL-STD-810G rating, it resists 4-foot (1.21m) drops, blowing sand and blowing dust to give workers more protection. Add on a Li-ION battery that prints 4,500 labels on a single charge and you’ve got a long-lasting labeler built for the most challenging workspaces.”

Brady built the M710 to overcome design and print obstacles that are time-consuming or that make the cable identification process difficult. With optional Bluetooth and WiFi, M710 users can design and print labels from a keypad, phone, or PC. They can quickly edit text, graphics, barcodes and symbols, or reprint a serialized label on the spot.

“The M710 boldly embraces today’s modern workspaces that rely on cloud-based systems to bridge the shop-to-field gap,” Brady continues. “Users get advanced features like label saving, sharing and data imports, plus they can store label files on the printer. Built to boost productivity through greater connectivity, the M710’s Bluetooth connection allows up to 5 mobile devices to be connected to the printer simultaneously, eliminating the need to stop work to connect. A network WiFi connection also allows up to 5 simultaneous connections.”

The M710 offers many time-saving features. A generous 3.5” color touchscreen makes it easy to navigate menus, plus edit label files to show what a label looks like before it's printed. Users also get a cleaner jobsite with a programmable auto label cutter. Adding to its overall user-friendliness, the M710 features an intuitive QWERTY keypad plus a number pad. And, when the work is done, a sizable, easy-to-grab handle provides a safe way to transport and store the printer.

The Wraptor™ A6200 Wrap Printer Applicator by Brady Corporation saves businesses both time and money while increasing productivity. In just 7 seconds, this device prints, wraps and identifies a cable. The A6200 reduces print/wrap cycle time by more than 50% when compared to hand application. It can wrap 515 cables per hour – 12 hours per day, all week long and it has bulk roll compatibility. With a bulk roll adapter and bulk rolls, users change out materials less frequently.

Because the A6200 is compact and lightweight, it’s ideal for cellular manufacturing and work that needs to get done in smaller workspaces. To make cable identification easier, Brady includes label creation software with each A6200 printer. With it, users can print cable labels with text, graphics and serialized labels, and get custom formatting. Eleven different apps come with the software package that’s designed for the most common cable labeling applications.

The A6200 has many built-in features that make it easy to operate including an icon-based user interface requiring no calibration, easy navigation and a large touchscreen. The device also offers enhanced connectivity options. Users can connect to their work with Wi-Fi, Ethernet or 3 USB ports, plus store 32 GB of data right on the printer. For better workspace organization, there is an optional rewinder accessory that neatly gathers and winds the label liner so it doesn’t spill out.

As the Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence continue to reshape our world, the CUBE-iT® Wall-Mount Cabinet with Integrated Power Solutions stands at the forefront of Chatsworth Products' solutions, revolutionizing connectivity and security. Its design, with a range of optional fan kits, makes it an ideal choice for diverse environments from open offices to healthcare facilities. The CUBE-iT® has a UL® Listed load rating of 300 lb and retrofit capabilities due to its rear panel with removable panels and rectangular knockouts.

The bundled CPI CUBE-iT® Wall-Mount Cabinet offers an all-in-one solution that combines protection and power support. Users can choose to include rack-mounted power strips or UPS battery backup from CPI, ensuring uninterrupted functionality and power availability. Additionally, the cabinet provides a full range of cable management features, ensuring organized and efficient cable routing. From prepunched conduit knockouts to interior cable attachment points, tie-down slots, and lashing brackets, every aspect is designed to simplify cable management and maintain a clutter-free environment.

The CUBE-iT® Wall-Mount Cabinet offers seamless integration for Power over Ethernet (PoE), wireless and premise networks, audio and video equipment, security and monitoring systems, as well as smart building initiatives. Its versatility empowers organizations to harness the potential of emerging technologies while upholding the highest standards of connectivity, security, and efficiency.

Chatsworth Products’ (CPI) Training Center goes “above and beyond by providing innovative education and training solutions for our valued employees, partners, and customers,” the company explains. The Drive Forward webinar series is designed to keep you ahead of the game, CPI adds. “Immerse yourself in cutting-edge trends and industry thought leadership delivered straight to your screen. From emerging technologies to visionary insights, our webinars are the ultimate resource to stay in sync with the ever-evolving ICT landscape.”

The CPI Training Center also includes state-of-the-art Customer Experience Centers located in CPI facilities worldwide. “Our industry-leading experts will guide you through immersive, in-person sessions on ICT solutions and industry-specific topics,” the company points out. “It’s an unparalleled opportunity to learn firsthand from the best in the field.”

The Knowledge Vault is CPI’s online training center. The learning management system puts the user in control; it is accessible from any mobile device, offering a vast selection of courses that empower users to achieve ICT goals. Users can download essential documents, earn course certificates, and enhance their knowledge and skills at their own pace.

“CPI proudly offers BICSI-certified training courses through the Knowledge Vault at no charge,” the company says. “Elevate your expertise with industry-recognized certifications that open doors to new opportunities … We collaborate with industry leaders to drive innovation forward.”

A social media company turned to CommScope’s Propel platform to meet the constant pressure to continually upgrade its network to handle exponential traffic and storage demands—without significantly increasing costs. The customer, which is based in the U.S., placed a priority on supporting three or four generations of future server/compute upgrade cycles with the most sustainable infrastructure architecture. Propel answered the call.

“The customer needed a faster, more streamlined network that would be easier to manage, adapt, and scale, and would enable the constant migration to higher speeds,” CommScope recalls. “Additionally, they needed to create greater cabinet density and overall capacity to better monetize their white space—all while keeping power requirements and uptime at their current levels. And in keeping with the company’s aggressive sustainability objectives, the environmental impact of the infrastructure architecture and design to support the network upgrade cycles had to be minimal.

“Partnering with CommScope, they soon were able to triple their total network capacity. They invited CommScope to help redesign a new network architecture to carry the platform into the future. The existing data center complex consists of two campuses with up to 16 interconnected data halls. Early in the project, the customer’s compute servers were still leveraging 1 GbE and 10 GbE connections; but, with demand for more server capacity quickly increasing, the bandwidth needed to increase. So, midway through the design phase, the customer asked CommScope’s team to rearchitect the design to include 25 GbE and 100 GbE server connections.”

Cabinet density increased 75%, from 16 servers to 28. Additionally, some computer cabinets, now equipped with 100 GbE ports, increased network capacity 400%. The densification of their server racks and compute pods necessitated a more-dense fiber cable and connector—reducing the total number of fiber trunk cables by 60% and the raw material content by 71%, and increasing available white space by 43%.

“These results translated into substantial improvements for the customer’s key business objective: the ability to rapidly turn up and support current and future computing technologies with a greater and sustainably efficient next-generation physical layer fiber architecture,” CommScope emphasizes. “The higher-density cabinets increased the square-foot productivity and reduced the white space demand.

“Secondly, the pod densification enabled the customer to maximize cooling efficiency by concentrating containment cooling to compute racks within the pods. This further added to their sustainability targets. Perhaps one of the most important benefits is how the redesign sets up the customer for the near- and long-term future. The design takes advantage of 16-fiber configurations capable with Propel, CommScope’s modular, fiber connectivity platform. As a result, the customer can now easily migrate from 1 GbE to 10, 25, 50, 100 and 200 GbE server compute infrastructures, without adding new fiber cabling and connectivity in the future. By extending the lifecycle of their infrastructure, the customer can defer the purchase of additional cabling and ultimately reduce their environmental impact.”

CommScope also earns a gold Cabling Innovators Award for the company’s commitment to sustainability. Among the company’s sustainability efforts are the following.

  • 100% of CommScope manufacturing facilities are certified to ISO 14001:2015 for environmental  management systems
  • 100% of CommScope’s factories are certified to ISO 45001:2018 for health and safety management systems
  • The company reduced global water withdrawal by 9.1%, and made significant reductions in its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions

CommScope has received multiple recognitions for its sustainability efforts, including being named by Newsweek as one of America’s most responsible companies, by Investors Business Daily as the second-highest ranked technology company in ESG, a gold CSR rating from Ecovadis, and a low-risk sustainability score from Sustainalytics and Yahoo finance.

The company’s Building and Data Center segment has developed a multi-discipline, multi-phase plan to improve sustainability efforts and outcomes, and help its customers and partners do the same. “The plan aligns our core competencies in network architecture, material science and technological innovation with critical environmental needs—energy reduction, waste reduction, and decarbonization,” CommScope said. “It defines how we respond to the market and the process and systems needed to support future sustainability action.”

Corning’s Edge Distribution System “lets you streamline server row cabling by replacing many patch cords with a single assembly, pre-engineered to your exact specifications,” the company explains. The system is pre-engineered, which enables faster and easier installation compared to a tradition patch-cord deployment. The Edge Distribution System is one assembly—one SKU—and a single box, which can be installed in 45 minutes versus 3 hours.

Corning points out these innovative characteristics in particular.

  • Faster installation: Reduces server row cabling time by up to 75% based on a row of 18 server cabinets with four fibers delivered to each cabinet.
  • Less congestion with simpler cable management: Replace many patch cords with a single assembly.
  • Minimize risk: Simplified installation means less ladder time, and less skilled-labor need, which reduces the risk associated with server row cable deployments.
  • Reduced waste: With just a single box per row, packaging is significantly reduced.

Corning’s MiniXtend® Ribbon Cable 200 Flow provides a 60% reduction in outside diameter (OD) while reducing cable prep time by 30% or more. The MiniXtend Cable with Flow Ribbon Technology is designed for microduct applications. “Although typically installed via jetting the cable, it also can be pulled into conduits at the rated loads specified, allowing for a myriad of backbone duct applications,” Corning points out. “The cable construction leverages Corning’s Flow Ribbon Technology in a centralized design in order to minimize cable diameter, allowing for smaller duct utilization.”

The microducts can be placed in new construction pathways or be used to “override” existing cables to avoid the cost of new-pathway construction.

The 60% OD reduction is in comparison to the existing 288 SST-UltraRibbon cable, while the 30% reduction in cable-prep time is thanks to the fact that the routable subunits do not require furcation. Corning’s Flow Ribbon Technology allows 200-µm and 250-µm splicer compatibility.

Dow’s AXELERON 6321 and CONTINUUM 2488 play a critical role in connecting remote areas to broadband and 5G services; they do so through a combined system that lowers lifecycle cost and delivers reliable connectivity. Dow explains, “In telecommunications infrastructure, the optical fibers must be protected, bundled within a cable jacket, and collectively protected in buried conduit.  Networks must be easily expandable and individual cables well identified to avoid confusion. Current jacket technology is limited by shrinkage and require lubricants to install. Jackets are also labeled via inkjet printing, which wears off and migrates. AXELERON™ 6321 and CONTINUUM™ 2488 are bimodal high density polyethylene made with the same Dow process but uniquely tailored, molecularly and compositionally, for their own individual application and optimized together as a system to deliver reliable connectivity with enhanced efficiency.”

The Dow system is chosen for applications where manufacturing efficiency, fast installation, long-term cable reliability, lower signal attenuation, and lower carbon footprint are desired. The Dow system was designed to address unmet needs in the market to allow new cable designs to achieve improvement for higher fiber count cables, reduced installation costs, and future expansion in dense networks. The system delivers the following capabilities.

• Fiber optic microcables that can be designed up to 60% smaller & 70% lighter

• Improved shrinkage with up to 25% less shrinkage to reduce stresses on the optical fiber transmission element and enable high quality signal transmission. The new technology, with high toughness, is designed for higher network densification and significantly smaller cable diameters and thinner jacket walls.

• Higher line speed: The process used in the manufacturing of microcables is demanding. Given the thinner jacket wall and high production line speeds, the jacketing process involves higher shear rates compared to traditional jacketing operations. This requires a polymer melt rheology or viscosity tailored for the process. In addition, the compounds require higher cleanliness to enable the manufacture of thin-wall, defect-free jackets.

• Lower Coefficient of Friction for faster and easier installation with significantly higher jetting distances (e.g. cable is pushed/blown up to 50% further within the conduit), reduced installation costs, terminations, time, labor, and CO2 emissions without the need for lubricants and applicators.

• Laser marking for higher durability printing on mini- and micro-cables with fine print character, excellent mark contrast, fast marking speed, no surface treatment required, and superior abrasion resistance for long term print durability.

The first of Eaton’s three Gold Cabling Innovators Awards is for the company’s Toolless Jacks. Toolless keystone jacks terminate Cat6a/6/5e network patch cable without the time, effort and expense of a punch-down tool. Installers set each wire to its matching color position on the specially designed wire cap and press the cap onto the jack.  The wires are terminated as the wire cap is pressed onto the jack and locked in place. Ideal for 22-24 AWG solid wire cabling, the jacks snap into wall plates, patch panels and surface-mount boxes.

Select toolless keystone jacks are specifically designed to prevent spark gap erosion that degrades the plug and jack contacts over time and can negatively influence data and/or power transmission capabilities. The ability to connect PoE devices saves the expense and effort of purchasing, connecting and installing individual power supplies for each PoE device.

Fully shielded solutions (models N238-001-SH-TF and N238-001-SH-TFA) have a protective metal housing to help fight against EMI/RFI line noise that can interfere with network signals and distort or destroy data. Select jacks have a dust cap or shutter for protection from dust and other contaminants when not in use.

Eaton’s G3 Universal input rack PDU works to save time, reduce costs and simply power management by accommodating rack equipment with a broad range of power requirements. Featuring new and innovative features like C39 outlets, toolless mounting buttons and a hot-swappable eNMC module, the G3 UPDU simplifies the process of global deployment by providing a flexible power distribution solution.  

Eaton’s G3 UPDU delivers a range of innovative features that help data center customers meet the most diverse data center rack power needs while alleviating the cost and complexity of having to mix and match different PDUs for different installations as the customer’s power needs evolve. The flexible power distribution solutions can accept multiple input voltages and plug types, reducing the need for region-specific models.

Cabling professionals frequently encounter a divers set of power requirements within data centers and other environments, making the need for flexible power distribution solutions essential for successful and fast installation. Eaton’s G3 UPDU boasts all the sophisticated management capabilities professionals expect from an Eaton PDU and can be easily deployed into a single data center or a global project across multiple locations—saving time, reducing costs and simplifying power management.

And Eaton’s SmartRack® industrial wall-mount enclosures are an innovative solution for deploying a wide variety of rack-mount or panel-mount equipment in industrial spaces, such as factory floors and machine shops, that have challenging environmental conditions. The enclosures are rated either NEMA 3R or NEMA 4 for protecting contents against the ingress of water (including rain, sleet and snow), solid foreign objects (including falling dirt) and even the formation of ice on the outside of the enclosure. NEMA 4 enclosures also protect against splashing water and hose-directed water that may be present in washdown areas,

Available in sizes from 5U to 18U, the NEMA enclosures help keep all types of equipment, ranging from switches and servers to alarms and industrial control systems, safe from excess moisture, dirt and physical damage. The enclosures are backed by a five-year limited warranty. The enclosures are metal with a durable powder-coated finish in either gray, red or yellow (color selection varies by enclosure size). All doors lock with a key to deter theft or tampering. Select models have a hinged back, which allows the enclosure to swing away from the wall for easy cable access.

Red or yellow enclosures are perfect for housing emergency supplies, including first-aid kits or fire extinguishers. The bright color makes them stand out to employees or first responders when time is critical. The front door is removable for easy access and managing equipment.

The NEMA 3R and select NEMA 4 wall-mount enclosures house 19-inch rack-mount IT equipment, such as UPS systems, switches and servers. Front and rear mounting rails adjust independently to accommodate different equipment depths. A removable bottom access panel allows installers to route data and power cables. (To maintain a NEMA rating, installers must use sealed fittings in the cutouts when connecting to conduit.) The NEMA 3R enclosures have built-in fans to help keep mounted equipment cool for longer life. Integrators and installers appreciate that the NEMA 4 enclosures for panel-mount equipment ship with the most common rack accessories, such as backing panels, wall-mount brackets and a document sleeve. This saves time and the hassle of placing multiple orders to complete an installation. The included metal and plastic backing panels accommodate a wide range of equipment, including alarms, hydraulic switches, breakers and control systems.

In 2021, during the pandemic, Hammond Manufacturing was struggling with labor shortages. Hammond’s design team invented the Rack Rail Support Tool (RRS) to assist assembly employees in installing larger rack attachments without needing two installers. The team noted that this innovation is quick to install and can support the weight of most rack equipment while fastening rack hardware. The result of this innovation is it increases worker safety by reducing muscle fatigue and it improves installation time.

The RRS was developed after the company established that this product would serve contractors in the field. Two versions were created, one for threaded rails and the other for square hole rails. Large components are challenging to rack up, especially when working alone. Simplify the installation of any four-post mounting equipment (server, NVR, rack shelf) while preventing arm muscle fatigue with the RRS.

HFCL’s microcable with high packing density earns a Gold Cabling Innovators Award. The company details the cable’s innovative features and user value by explaining, “In the realm of fiber optic cable deployment, where speed, efficiency, and reliability are paramount, our uniquely designed compact microcable with 200-micron fiber not only enables higher fiber packing density and improved cable jetting performance but also redefines what is possible with this class of cable. With their innovative approach, unparalleled user value, and strong sustainability features, our microcables are an excellent choice for data center interconnect, FTTX distribution, and access networks.

“Our nano-thin microcable technology is a game-changer, offering faster installation speeds and increased maximum fiber count within existing ducts. By pushing the boundaries, our innovative design allows for a remarkable 14-34% increase in packing density than conventional 200-micron fiber cables. By allowing use of smaller microducts and improving jetting performance, our cables empower network operators to achieve previously unimaginable levels of efficiency.”

HFCL adds that its microcables deliver exceptional long-term value for network operators. “While most extremely compact microcables use highly bend-insensitive G.657.A2 fibers, we have incorporated cost-effective, backward-compatible G.657.A1 fiber to reduce costs without compromising on quality. In extreme environments spanning from -40 to 70 degrees Celsius, these cables exhibit outstanding resilience against thermal and mechanical stress, with minimal effects on signal attenuation. This durability ensures uninterrupted connectivity, making them ideal for a wide range of microduct applications and environments, including duct override applications. Moreover, the simplified jetting installation process significantly reduces labor costs, boosting overall operational efficiency for network deployment projects.”

The microcables stringently adhere to the requirements of the ICEA-S-122-744 and IEC 60794-5-10 standards validating their performance at extreme conditions. “Unlike other cables on the market, which predominantly utilize more expensive G.657.A2 fiber, which may also have higher baseline attenuation, our cables provide superior performance and cost efficiency,” the company adds. “The unique design enables the utilization of smaller microducts, while maintaining exceptional jetting performance. This breakthrough translates into higher speed and/or longer distance installation, allowing for rapid and efficient network expansion.

“The exceptional cable jetting performance of our microcables has been thoroughly tested and validated on the IEC 60794-1-21 Method E24 microduct test track. The ability to achieve faster installation speeds and increased maximum fiber count within a duct opens new horizons for network planners and operators, offering enhanced flexibility and scalability while meeting evolving connectivity demands.”

Jonard Tools developed a pull line blower for 3/4"-2" (18-50 mm) conduit for cable pulling. This pull line blower is perfect for running wire or cable through conduits multiple times a day. With its design, it makes quick work of bends and kinks in conduit, saving time compared to mule tape or jet line. This pull line blower blows or sucks pull line without the need for a compressor and is for all commercial and residential pipe work with the internal diameters mentioned. It is also lightweight and ergonomic for great accessibility, even in confined spaces, and works on flexible conduit.

The kit includes: 1 PLB-1000 Pull Line Blower (aka Stringing Gun), 2 pull line rolls (Ø 1 mm, tensile strength approx. 24 kg, length approx. 900 m), 1 suction device, 1 components set A: 2 joints ½" reducer 19/12 mm plus nozzle int. Ø 9,5 mm, 1 components set B: 3 joints ¾" nozzle int. Ø 16 mm plus nozzle int. Ø 19 mm, 1 special nozzle black for int. Ø from 25 to 50 mm, 1 special nozzle with 90° angle Ø ext. 12 mm, 3 beads (round) of Ø 11mm, 3 beads (round) of Ø 13mm, 3 beads (round) of Ø 16mm, and 1 operating manual.

Leviton’s LM-RDT Cat 6A UTP cables feature a reduced outside diameter and deliver performance margins above the Cat 6A standard, making them ideal for cable upgrades, retrofit applications, or areas where space is at a premium,

Leviton LM-RDT Cat 6A UTP Plenum (CMP) Cable was introduced in early 2022, and LM-RDT riser (CMR) and indoor/outdoor (I/O) CMP cables were introduced in early 2023. These three LM-RDT cables feature a reduced outside diameter and deliver performance margins above the Cat 6A standard, making them ideal for cable upgrades, retrofit applications, or areas where space is at a premium, covering all enterprise environments.

The LM-RDT cables offer a number of important innovations, including the following.

The smallest outside diameter available for Cat 6A UTP cable, with CMP at 0.230", CMR at 0.245", and I/O CMP at 0.235". With a smaller and lighter cable, LM-RDT reduces the size or quantities of hardware required for cabling pathways, and in turn reduces installation time. In addition, the high-density Cat 6A cables can fit into exiting pathways and spaces that were originally designed for Cat 5e and Cat 6.

Fillerless design and less waste. LM-RDT cable construction eliminates the cross-filler, increasing speed of installation and reducing jobsite waste. The LM-RDT CMR and I/O CMP cables are the first Cat 6A cables of their type to use the fillerless design. The I/O cable also uses a gel-free construction, creating 33% less waste overall. The cable also comes on a smaller reel, creating 7.5 lbs less job site waste and improves shipping density by 200%, reducing transportation, storage costs, and carbon footprint.

Precision Twist Technology. LM-RDT cables use Precision Twist Technology, which meticulously controls the twist rate of each pair. This allows for LM-RDT to have transmission performance above standard for alien crosstalk parameters in a small OD cable for high density applications. Precision Twist Technology was developed by Berk-Tek engineers based on many years of experience and the manufacture of billions of feet of cable.

Plenum cable jackets include Leviton's FLX-1™ advanced polymer technology for greater flexibility, easier routing through cable pathways, and virtually no coil memory. This translates into simpler and smoother installations, improving  job site productivity. The I/O CMP cable has a best-in-class 0.94” minimum bend radius for better management in tight spaces.

Excellent signal isolation. The cables offer PoE and Alien Crosstalk performance that exceeds standards, making it an excellent choice for 802.11ac wireless, HD video, IP security, small cell, and all 10 Gigabit Ethernet applications. The cable’s isolation wrap provides superior heat management and noise-reducing performance.

LM-RDT cable is part of two Leviton Cat 6A end-to-end systems: the ATLAS-X1™ RDT System, which includes the high-performance ATLAS-X1 jack, and the EXTREME™ RDT System, with the economical EXTREME jack.

The Santa Margarita Water District is the second largest retail water agency in Orange County, California. Formed in 1964 as a landowner district by a group of ranchers who wanted to create a reliable source of water for their cattle, the District serves over 155,000 customers in Mission Viejo, Rancho Santa Margarita and the unincorporated areas of Coto de Caza, Las Flores, Ladera Ranch, and Talega. The District provides its customers with safe, affordable, and reliable water and wastewater services that maximize human, environmental, and financial resources to help guide South Orange County’s water supply needs into the next century. To perform these services, the District carefully monitors and diligently maintains more than 1,200 miles of water and sewer lines across its 62,000 acre service area to ensure that customers receive the water they need.

Upgrading the existing network infrastructure would keep the District at the forefront of technological advancements and provide it with the ability to maintain a competitive advantage in the waste water conservation industry. The upgrade would also provide quality service to its customers by increasing network uptime and availability. In addition, the secure, sustainable, and future-ready network would enhance the company’s ability to promote efficient use of water resources and conservation to achieve cost savings. Along with physical security being a significant factor for this upgrade, the District needed a long-term, cost-effective solution that would require little maintenance or replacements.

To accommodate its requirements, the District designed the fiber optic network to help utilize the existing duct banks throughout the plant and transfer the PLCs to a very secure, high speed network. While researching terminating fiber at various locations, the District decided to also deploy the Panduit Integrated Network Zone System. Along with the Panduit solution, the selected fiber installation partner for this project was Alpha Omega. The Panduit Integrated Network Zone System with an industrial Ethernet switch enables network communications between the control room and manufacturing floor of the District’s industrial facility. This capability allows for more efficient and future ready communications, as users migrate proprietary manufacturing floor networks to a single network technology using

the EtherNet/IP open protocol to achieve IT and automation best practices. The integrated industrial Ethernet switch enables the District to achieve rapid deployment and offers management and diagnostics from within IT and controls environments, and optimizes network traffic.

The versatile zone enclosures were placed at eight selected locations throughout the plant. The final termination is within zone enclosures distributed throughout each floor of the building, allowing cables to be managed and patched in a single enclosure. It also helps reduce the number of home runs throughout the plant and abandoned cable in plenum spaces, allowing the plant to run more efficiently and safely.

The Integrated Network Zone System includes copper uplinks with redundant power supplies and the pre-installed Panduit Industrial Network Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS). The Panduit UPS uses ultracapacitor technology instead of batteries, eliminating the number one cause of conventional UPS failures. The no battery design is maintenance-free, delivering 2X better ROI and 50 – 70% lower cost of ownership than a battery-based UPS. This allows the District to maintain operational efficiency more effectively through improved device management, employing a smaller width that saves valuable space and allows better integration and zone monitoring. The UPS solution works in conjunction with the Integrated Network Zone System to lower the risk of downtime associated with power interruptions to keep the plant’s critical equipment operating at full capacity.

Panduit’s technologies were instrumental in a recent network project at Capilano University. Capilano University, also known as CapU, is a teaching-focused university based in North Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada with additional programming serving the Sunshine Coast and the Sea-to-Sky corridor of the province. With industry-leading instructors, small classes, and over 100 programs across five distinctive faculties, CapU is a unique place where students are encouraged to make their mark, in and out of the classroom. With nearly 9,000 students and 1,200 employees, the university is known for its animation, early childhood care, motion picture arts, tourism management, jazz, legal studies, and music therapy programs.

Maintaining a reliable network infrastructure at CapU keeps the campus running and gives IT Infrastructure time to focus on more rewarding initiatives than troubleshooting outages. The university is focusing on infrastructure improvements for operational efficiency gained by the communication room refit.

The scope of this project addressed refitting all 28 telecommunication rooms at Capilano University with a new layout that utilizes Copper Patch Cords, NetKey Keystone Jack Modules, 2-Post Racks, and NetRunner Vertical Cable Managers. The Cedar Building 300 room was a pilot project for CapU to test a new design that was used to upgrade other areas on the campus thereafter.

The old layouts for the Cedar 300 Room consisted of 600+ Ethernet connections, where rack layouts previously held switches at the bottom and patch panels at the top. The two were connected by almost 1200 meters of three-and four-meter patch cables. Elaine Wilson, Panduit Sales Manager for British Columbia, leveraged her expertise to enable university partners to change this room layout using 48 ports of Keystone Patch Panels followed by 48 ports of switch capacity directly below. NetKey is configurable for tight space and the RJ45 interface provides a quick plug-and-play connection to patch cords with traceability. This was connected by 200 meters of 28 AWG copper patch cords at standard lengths of 30 cm, which cleaned up the layout by quite a lot.

After the Cedar 300 room was completed, the design was updated with color-coded patch cables in other space to identify VLANs. This allows engineers to visually trace connections from patch panel to switchport. Now, IT staff can walk into a com-room and immediately identify which cables are for a particular VLAN.

Now, Capilano University IT staff can quickly and easily identify connections from the patch panel to the switch, decreasing the time to troubleshoot, trace, identify, and correct cabling issues. One month after all existing server rooms were reconfigured, an engineering lab was moved to a different building. The work to configure the communications room to accommodate the changes needed for the lab was completed in only one hour, by one staff member. With the old system, half of a workday may have been spent for such a project. Upon completion, Capilano University refocused on new projects in which Panduit will bring this new layout, woven with new fiber optic solutions, to the Center for Childhood Studies: a 2,137 square meters, two-story building that will house the School of Education and Childhood Studies. Construction for this space started in Fall 2022. Additionally, the on-site student housing complex will be outfitted with fiber optics. This is a six-story, 8,250-meter complex that can accommodate up to 362 students. Upgrades to this layout will include the RapidID™ Network Mapping System, an autonomous network documentation solution that takes the guess work out of labeling, tracing, and documenting network maps.

FlexFusion XGL cabinets by Panduit consist of a welded and assembled steel frame construction available in 600mm and 800mm widths, 1070mm and 1200mm depths and 42 RU and 48 RU heights.

Cabinets include front single hinge door and split hinged rear doors with 80% open perforation, horizontally split locking side panels, 1 set of PDU mounting bracket and casters. The 800mm wide cabinet comes with provisions for front or rear cable management fingers, brackets that are available as an accessory, and (4) 19" 1 RU covered openings for pass through. The top of the cabinet includes brush cable entry points to prevent air leakage. The cabinet has a 1588 kg (3500 lbs.) static load rating and 454 kg (1000 lbs.) rolling load rating. Leveling legs, caster, ganging brackets, and floor mounting brackets are all included with every cabinet. The cabinets and its accessories are integrally bonded without the use of grounding wires to provide a safe and reliable network while reducing installation costs.

FlexFusion XGL cabinets are ideal for network or server equipment that provides maximum flexibility and the capacity to manage high cable density in data center, enterprise or co-location deployment. Safely houses 19" rack mount IT equipment in an indoor environment, provides extensive cable management options and thermal efficient cabinet.

The Siemon UltraMAX copper connectivity system blends usability, quality, and performance within a single platform ideal for your category 5e, 6 and 6A UTP deployments. UltraMAX outlets maximize usability, quality and performance into a sleek footprint that’s ideally suited for users to deliver quick, reliable terminations the first time, every time. UltraMAX patch panels maximize functionality, aesthetics and industry-leading performance into a format that will allow users to configure their ideal system.

While category 6A is recommended for new installations and continues to gain market share, all three UTP performance levels comprise infrastructure across global enterprise spaces. With fast, consistent terminations and flexible mounting options, UltraMAX reduces installation time by 20% and avoids costly re-works, allowing any skill level to reliably terminate critical connections with ease. The UltraMAX 6A provides installers who prefer a punch-down outlet with a great option, coupled with a smaller overall footprint, which eliminates cable stress in shallow-depth environments.

UltraMAX offers a wide array of outlets, patch panels, and termination tools that allow users to support their unique category 5e, 6, and 6A UTP network deployments and installation preference. This common platform for category 5e, 6, and 6A UTP leverages Siemon's high degree of automation to reduce cost and ensure flexible capacity in evolving markets.

Siemon’s FiberNOW program also earned a Gold Cabling Innovators Award. FiberNOW delivers the industry’s shortest lead times on select fiber cabling and connectivity; with both standard and custom-confi gured products shipped in 5 days or less. The program is available in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico for orders received by 2pm ET. The order ships within 5 days of booking. In the U.S., the shipment can be drop-shipped directly to the customer.

Siemon comments on the program: “’Available now and ready to ship’ is hardly what you’re used to hearing when it comes to high-performance fiber cabling. But that’s exactly what the FiberNOW program delivers. Backed by Siemon’s innovative manufacturing processes and optimized logistics, FiberNOW delivers the industry’s shortest lead times on select fiber cabling and connectivity—with both standard and custom-configured product shipped in 5 days or less.”

Siemon also earned a Gold Cabling Innovators Award for the role its advanced data center solutions played in a project for healthcare organization Wellstar. While organizations typically utilize the cloud for common business applications; increased focus on security, control and regulatory compliance have led to many adopting private hosting within colocation spaces to support the majority of their workloads within colocation space. This is especially the case in the healthcare industry where having full control and visibility over electronic medical records, maintaining uptime and availability, and supporting emerging technologies is paramount for delivering exceptional patient care as well as complying with stringent healthcare standards and regulations.

As the only health system in Georgia with Level I, Level II, and Level III trauma centers, Wellstar operates 10 hospitals, 9 emergency departments, more than 350 medical offices, and dozens of other healthcare services throughout the greater Atlanta and western regions of the state. Having grown alongside technology since their establishment in 1993, Wellstar realized that their on-premises data centers no longer provided the reliability needed to maximize uptime and patient care across their facilities.

Rather than upgrading and expanding existing data center facilities, they decided to migrate their workloads to two diverse carrier-neutral colocation data centers owned and operated by Quality Technology Services (QTS), a leading provider of more than 7 million square feet of data center space across North America and Europe. One of the colocation data centers is LEED Gold certified and the largest in the Southeast with 970,000 square feet of space, more than 275 MW of planned capacity, its own on-site power substation, and direct fiber access to a variety of service providers. The other offers 385,000 square feet and 26 MW of power capacity with diverse power feeds and plenty of room for expansion.

When Wellstar migrated their workloads to QTS colocation data centers, they signed a 7 to 10 year lease at a time when the price for space was not at the premium it is today, but that has changed. “Space wasn’t a big deal early on. We had plenty and weren’t anywhere close to maximizing density, but now servers are constantly being brought in for new medical applications. At the same time, we have to keep patient records for many years to comply with regulations,” says Andre DaBreo, network engineer with Wellstar. “With inflation and hyperscalers and enterprise businesses now buying up colocation space, the cost has increased. If we needed to buy more colocation space, it would now be at a premium.”

Thankfully, Wellstar has been able to expand within their leased space using advanced data center solutions from Siemon that facilitate the management of high-density connectivity, ease installation, and cost-effectively support migration to higher-speed applications.

For their initial migration to the colocation data centers, Wellstar used an early generation standard-density fiber enclosure from Siemon that supported up to 96 duplex fiber connections or 48 MPO fiber connections in a 2U space. At the time, it was the ideal solution for Wellstar due to its superior cable management, port identification, and accessibility. As Wellstar needed to bring more high-speed servers online, they deployed Siemon’s highdensity plug and play fiber system with low-loss modules, adapters, trunk assemblies, and jumpers that supported their need for 72 duplex fiber ports in a 1U space. While that solution served them well for several years, when Siemon unveiled its innovative LightVerse® High-Density Fiber Optic Cabling System with advanced features and flexibility, it was an easy decision for Wellstar to advance once again.

STL’s Multicore Fiber also earned Gold. The current generation of highly compact ultra-large fiber count cable is going through a lot of innovation. Its form factor has been significantly reduced by the introduction of inter-bonded ribbon (IBR) technologies, reduced coating diameter fibers (< 200 μm) and micro/macro bend insensitive fibers such as Stellar, BOW-LITE (E) and BOW-LITE Supper (G.657.A2/ B3). Further disruption in optical fiber cable manufacturing is the need of the hour for sustainable network infrastructure with lesser material density, ultra-compact, lighter weight and faster deployment. The information carrying capacity in a single fiber can be dramatically increased by having more single mode cores with a common clad region.

Multi-core Fibre (MCF) has capability equivalent to four single core fibers. This results in 75% reduction in overall surface area as occupied by single core fibers. Therefore, for a cable with the same number of fiber cores, cables with a 4-core MCF will be more compact, slimmer, lightweight than equivalent cables made of single core fiber. MCF improves material efficiency and reduces total cost of ownership, making it an ideal solution for data center interconnects.

Considering the standard SMF diameter, the amount of clad glass material in a MCF will be reduced to 1/4th than what is needed for single core SMF. While the core region glass remains the same as SMF, the coating material used will reduce linearly by the factor of number of cores in MCF.  The core diameter and clad diameter for single-core and multi-core fibers can be kept in the range of 8-10 μm and 125 μm respectively. The multi-core consists of more cores in the same clad diameter and the number of cores varies from 2, 3, 4, 7, 22, etc. The overall coating diameter of multi-core fiber has similar dimension as standard SMF, i.e. 250/200 μm.

MCF will drastically reduce the cable diameter and weight, thus requiring much narrower trench and duct. In addition, for the given cable diameter, with MCF fiber count can be increased in linear proportion with the number of cores in MCF. For example, with 4-core MCF the loose tube cable with 864 fiber core of 22.5 mm diameter can be made into 3456 fiber core cable. MCF cable needs narrower duct diameter, corresponding duct material, narrower trench width, which enhances the speed of deployment and significantly reduces network installation expenses.

Development of multi-core optical fiber targets to resolve data traffic problems due to high capacity transmission. Data transmission capacity is directly proportional to the number of fiber cores. The higher number of cores increases the data carrying capacity as compared to standard SMF. Therefore, with the use of MCFs, the traditional optical fiber cable dimension can be dramatically reduced. Due to this added advantage, the data center interconnect network infrastructure and backbone of C-RAN infrastructure will benefit by an extremely compact, lighter optical fiber cable that also results in faster splicing and deployment.

Sumitomo Electric Lightwave’s (SEL) 3RU Rack-Mounted Splice Enclosure meets the demand for high-density splicing in congested areas, accommodating up to 144 splice ribbons (1728 fibers) within a 3RU space.

Increasing bandwidth-taxing applications and data processing demands are pushing companies to reimagine how to maximize their space while maintaining functionality, usability, and ensuring the future readiness of their network.

SEL’s 3RU Rack-Mounted Splice Enclosure features important innovations and benefits that solve space, usability, and functionality challenges while also providing a secure, clean, and cost-efficient distribution point in which to transition between different cable formats and fiber counts, protect fiber terminations (bare fibers), and manage excess cable slack.

SEL has achieved this ground-breaking capacity within a 3RU space by using splice tray and cable routing technology developed to better utilize space within small high-density cabinets such as the 3K Vertical Hyperscale eXchange (V-XSH). The newly-developed splice trays and enhanced cable-routing brackets eliminate wasted space within the enclosure without sacrificing fiber slack storage, cable management, or usability.

Specifically:

•The enclosure allows users to maximize space and budget by using existing racks to splice, route, and manage excess fiber slack safely.

•Larger splice trays give 48” of fiber slack at 1.5 revolutions in the tray compared to typical competitor splice trays, which offer 26” of fiber slack at 1.5 revolutions in the tray.

•Integrated cable management and routing are available at each tray level, allowing for easy initial installation and re-entry for MACs.

•Smart cable entry allows for left, right, top, and bottom cable entry - providing easy access and maximum flexibility.

•Innovative use of space provides 2RU of room for other applications.

LanTEK IV-S is TREND Networks’ fastest, most powerful, and most easy-to-use certifier with a full-featured cloud-based project management solution, and has a dual-core processor and enough memory storage to save 5,000 tests.

With LanTEK IV-S, users can conduct and save a Cat6A test within 7 seconds. LanTEK IV-S is also future-ready as the enhanced functionality also certifies links up to Cat8.1 and Cat8.2 and by making future software updates automatically done via Wi-Fi.

LanTEK IV-S has built-in Wi-Fi connectivity, enabling on-site engineers, technicians, and installers to wirelessly upload results to the TREND AnyWARE Cloud test management system, preventing data from being lost or delayed.

The cloud-based system can also help eliminate costly setup errors. All project information can be pre-configured in the cloud by project managers based anywhere, helping installers get started faster on-site and supporting greater accuracy.

With the TeamViewer Live Support function it's possible to connect to the LanTEK IV-S certifier remotely, minimizing troubleshooting time, increasing collaboration, and reducing costly call-backs to site.

LanTEK IV-S also includes the patented VisiLINQ™ permanent link adapter to increases productivity by giving users everything needed to initiate testing on the certifier and view the results in the palm of their hand, saving time and helping technicians to work smarter.

Wesco has opened a new Innovation Center to provide physical collaborative workspaces that accelerate innovation. This new facility in Glenview, Illinois is designed to bring end-user customers, integrators, product suppliers and technology providers together to connect, collaborate and create. The space provides a single destination for customers to interact with live demonstrations, engage with technical subject matter experts, find answers to critical project questions, and test concepts and solutions before deploying them.

The Innovation Center is equipped with the latest technologies to support accelerating customer needs around electrification, automation and IoT, green energy and grid modernization, and 24/7 connectivity and security. The space is modular and customizable to foster deep dive discussions around customers’ unique business needs. It is a place where problem solving and design thinking thrive, and where ideas can become reality. The Glenview Innovation Center is the latest addition to Wesco’s global network of innovation facilities, with locations in Mexico, Brazil, Ireland, England and India.

This first of its kind design facility showcases best in class installation practices in a variety of installation environments for Smart Building, Smart Data Center and Smart Industrial facilities with IoT use cases for energy management, health and safety and space optimization.

Two products were selected for Silver level Cabling Innovators Awards, meaning they demonstrate marked improvement over previous methods, approaches, or use of systems and products.

Cablofil Data Center Solutions from Legrand earned a Silver Cabling Innovators Award. Cablofil, a brand by Legrand, has expanded its data center solutions with its line to offer two new cable dropout accessories. The expansion allows contractors to save time and money, as one challenge they face is how to run expansive lengths of cable without compromising the support of the wire mesh tray at the dropout location.

To complement the original Universal Dropout, Legrand has released two new options – the Basic Dropout (BDO) and the Standard Dropout (SDO) which are a support solution for running cables in high-capacity centers, without compromising strength and support for flexibility and speed.

The BDO snaps into place without hardware. It mounts at the end of the wire basket cable tray parallel or perpendicular to the tray bottom. The 4” width capacity allows small cable bundles through the mesh. The full 90-degree drop and 2” radius reduce cable stress. BDO's extended side wings offer extra cable support and tie-down slots to assist and secure the cables as they exit the dropout. The solution is compatible with all Cablofil® Wire Mesh trays, however, you will need to cut wires on your cable tray.

The SDO offers stronger cable support than the BDO, is compatible with all Cablofil® Wire Mesh trays, and the wire mesh tray doesn't require cutting. The SDO is available in 150 (6”) and 300 (12”) widths that when used in combination provide options for 6”, 12”, 18”, and 24”. The full 90-degree drop and 3” radius reduce cable stress. The dropout mounts over the side or at the end of the wire basket cable tray (both atop or below wire basket wires) and offers the same tie-down slots as the BDO.

STL’s Optotec Max Enclosure also earned Silver. Ubiquitous connectivity cannot be said to be ‘overemphasized’ anymore. Around the world, there has been a sudden surge in connectivity demand, whether to run enterprise-grade connectivity from homes for online education, work, shopping, entertainment, etc. For a superior customer experience, operators around the globe need to deploy next-generation fiber optic solutions to build more resilient networks with negligible downtime, high speed and low latency. For faster network roll-out, operators need to rely on high quality, flexible, and agile products to enable networks to meet some of the key requirements like:

·       Cost savings with the reduction in the size of passive infrastructure like ducts and manholes

·       Resilient and future-ready networks with easy-to-deploy compact closures in 2L, 4L and 6L capacity

To meet these requirements, STL presents Optotec Max closures that elevate your network quality with the following benefits:

Compact Closure to optimize TCO of the network

STL Optotec MAX closures are particularly developed for FTTH network deployment. The MAX closures range is a new, modern concept of cable termination and splicing intended to expedite installation procedures and minimize volume needs, hence better TCO. This closure comes in 2 variants, MAX4 and MAX6 litre volume capacity. MAX4 can do splicing upto 144 fibres and MAX6 can do upto 288 fibres.

Innovative Quad Lock Technology for ease of Installation even with Semi-Skilled Manpower

MAX is an environmentally sealed single-ended “dome-type” closure for fiber management systems that provides the functions of splicing and passive component integration in plants outside.

They are intended for micro-sheath, ribbon (IBR), dielectric cables and have provisions for all common cable diameters. The base and dome are sealed by a quad-lock clamp-gasket system. MAX project is naturally compliant with FTTH requirements and overpressure safety requests.

Ergonomic Design for Cable Entry and fibre management

One oval entry port for looped (uncut) cable and four round ports for drop cable entry/exit are provided in the base. The cable entries are for cold application kits (no flame needed, small diameter cables accepted). Uncut midspan tube storage space is available on the back of the stack

Innovative tube retention lip design for ease of operations

The innovative design of MAX closures is the result of working closely with the installers. Our attention to queries from the field pushed our RnD team to patent a reliable and compact method to store the pass-through cable modules. With focus on ergonomic design and faster installation, MAX closures come with rotatable tube retention lips. This results in enormous cost and time savings during installation and maintenance.

It is suitable for installation on utility poles, and underground chambers with best-in-class build quality.

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