Fiber Optics

Stronger Fiber Optics with DuPont Kevlar®

DuPont™ Kevlar® helps provide improved flexibility in the design and manufacturing of fiber optic cable.

DuPont™ Kevlar® is used as a strength member in fiber optics. The optical fibers in the cable have to be safeguarded against mechanical stresses to ensure their optimal performance. Kevlar®, normally applied in the periphery of the cable, helps provide the necessary protection. Kevlar® also brings additional functionalities that address the dielectric, weight, diameter, flexibility, and handling requirements in a fiber optic cable. When used as a central strength member for fiber optics, where properties such as compression, flexibility, and low diameter are required, it is commonly combined with resins to form a Kevlar® Reinforced Plastic (KRP).

Aerial dielectric self-supporting cables
Higher tensile modulus to weight and smaller cable size in an aerial cable made with Kevlar® help result in stronger cables that use less material. Immune to electromagnetic disturbances, environmental moisture, and temperature fluctuations, aerial cables of Kevlar® help provide error-free data transmission in all weather.

Water-blocking yarns
The functionality of Kevlar® can also be enhanced by treating its surface with super-absorbing water polymers. The resulting yarn can, in turn, be used as a strength member. The purpose of a water-blocking yarn is to help prevent the ingression of water into the cable, which can lead to signal attenuation and a shorter service life.

Premise cables
Increased strength is just one of many ways Kevlar® helps producers of premise cables make better products. Uniform coverage around the fiber makes cable production more efficient and results in a more consistent outside diameter (O.D.). Easy connectorization also distinguishes premise cables made of Kevlar®.

Fiber to the home (FTTH)
Kevlar® has been instrumental as a component fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) technology accessible to customers looking for high-bandwidth connectivity in homes, offices, and apartments. Protecting cables between the central office and the home, Kevlar® is helping to play an essential role in an increasingly connected world.

Ballistic tapes
Many cable manufacturers have used ballistic tape made of Kevlar® to help protect aerial cables that risk failure from gunshot. Wrapped longitudinally or in spirals, ballistic tape of Kevlar® will stop most bullet fragments and pellets from entering the cable, preserving the integrity of the cable.

Building a ripcord made of Kevlar® into the outer layer of cable jackets helps give technicians easy access to the fiber optic lines inside and eliminates the need to use a cutting tool, which can damage the glass wave guides. With high tensile strength and a small diameter, ripcords of Kevlar® help provide the sharpest, cleanest and fastest cut through jackets made of polyethylene, PVC, or steel armor. For reliability and performance, no other cable ripcord material can match Kevlar®.

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