Openreach timesaver speeds up fibre roll out 

A deployment timesaver is being trialled by Openreach as it seeks to speed up the roll out of fibre.

The use of a new ribbonised fibre cable is said to be five times faster than conventional cabling as it bonds individual ultrafast fibres together in a web-like pattern that allows increased packing density in a cable. 

Engineers 'blow' these cables long distances through ducting on a current of compressed air without having to joint.

The ribbon format also allows engineers to splice together 12 fibres simultaneously which means joints can be completed five times faster. 

Openreach collaborated with tech firm Fujikura and cable installation business CBS Products to develop the technology which is currently under trial in Leeds.

Openreach plans to scale up the trial with deployments in other areas before running an invitation to tender later this year.
Openreach Chief Engineer Andy Whale said: "As we build bigger fibre networks to support the roll out of FTTP - especially in cities - we need to install higher fibre count spine cables to our exchanges. 

"With these new air blown cables it means we no longer need to pull in a few hundred metres at a time."
CBS Products MD Robert Davidson added: “The pilot in Leeds showcases a significant leap as the 432 fibre cable installation machine can blow and install up to 60 metres of fibre per minute.”

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