Clearfield offers FieldShield connector, terminal for hardened environments

Sept. 30, 2013
Fiber-optic broadband connectivity specialist Clearfield, Inc. (NASDAQ:CLFD) has added elements to its FieldShield line for hardened environments. The offerings, which include FieldShield Hardened Connectors and the FieldShield Multiport SmarTerminal, bring the ease of use of pushable fiber and reduced cost to hardened connector applications, Clearfield says.

Fiber-optic broadband connectivity specialist Clearfield, Inc. (NASDAQ:CLFD) has added elements to its FieldShield line for hardened environments. The offerings, which include FieldShield Hardened Connectors and the FieldShield Multiport SmarTerminal, bring the ease of use of pushable fiber and reduced cost to hardened connector applications, Clearfield says.

The new fiber-optic connectors feature a field-installed, tool-less housing that slips over the optical connector on the FieldShield assembly to provide a water tight seal when mated to each port of the FieldShield Multiport SmarTerminal. The pushable fiber-optic connectors slide into the housing and are weather protected by a two-grommet system. When used in conjunction with FieldShield Microduct, the FieldShield drop cable has been tested to meet GR-771 and GR-3120 standards for robust environmental performance.

Meanwhile, the FieldShield SmarTerminal provides bend limiting strain relief while handling the cables. Supporting up to eight ports of OSP plug-and-play connectivity at the network access point, the terminal is configured with factory-terminated FieldShield fiber-optic cable assemblies, with the feeder configuration pushed or pulled through FieldShield Microduct to a consolidated splice point. Distribution ports are sealed with air-tight and water-tight caps until service turn up. For deployment in a pedestal, flowerpot, or vault, this above-grade or below-grade approach offers the quickest, least intrusive placement method to deploy fiber, Clearfield asserts. It also reduces restoration and troubleshooting costs as a cut fiber does not have to be retrenched, the company adds.

Unlike traditional hardened connector technology, which Clearfield says is bulky and requires the use of flat drop cables that are stiff and difficult to store, the FieldShield connectivity products maintain the form and fit of the SC connector while integrating slack storage within the terminal. A dual LC connector version is also available.

“Like other sealed connector technologies designed to withstand the rugged outside plant environment, the FieldShield solution starts with a factory-terminated industry-standard SC or dual LC interface,” explains Johnny Hill, chief operating officer of Clearfield. “But unlike the solutions that incorporate the SC interface into a large outer housing at point of manufacture, causing the unit to be heavy and limited to flat drop cables, FieldShield solutions team a standard FieldShield connector with a field-installable, tool-less smart housing that provides a water tight seal. These solutions decrease installation and maintenance time, while providing superior durability and reliability in the drop segment of the network. ”

The FieldShield Hardened Connectors and the FieldShield Multiport SmarTerminal are shipping later this fall.

For more information on enclosures and suppliers, visit the Lightwave Buyer’s Guide.

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