In industrial applications, optical fiber offers enhanced performance over more traditional copper solutions allowing for longer links, higher working temperatures, and immunity from electromagnetic interference.
OFS provides rugged, durable and reliable optical fiber systems for digital manufacturing, automation, energy monitoring and protection, smart cities and Industrial Ethernet.
Development of specialty fiber optic products for industrial applications dates back to the 1970’s when a private, mid-size company in central Connecticut, USA specializing in precision blasting caps for the mining and construction industries turned their research and development focus on the integration of optical fiber in their devices. The leadership team reasoned that optical fiber was going to become the wave of the future and they wanted to ensure their company kept pace with this evolving technology. The scientist understood they would need a large core, step-index optical fiber capable of withstanding the harsh environments in which their products were deployed. A thorough evaluation of what was then available in the marketplace revealed that existing products would not provide the reliable solution the scientists required and that the market expected. The company established a project to develop a brand-new type of specialty optical fiber. Their efforts led to the creation of HCS® (Hard Clad Silica) optical fiber.
The scientist invented a polymer with optical properties that when applied in a very thin layer and cured on pure silica resulted in an optical fiber resistant to static fatigue and high in tensile strength. The company then went about developing its cabling capabilities and developing connectors and termination tools for this new type of optical fiber. HCS optical fiber with its hard polymer cladding and crimp and cleave connectorization technique made fiber as easy to use as copper for industrial applications.
Today, HCS and other specialty optical fiber products as well as ruggedized communications-grade fiber optic cables and connectivity solutions are part of the OFS Industrial Networks product portfolio. These products are used in a variety of applications where durability and reliability are essential for the success of our customers’ deployments.
Automation and Control
For Ethernet on the factory floor, the OFS GiHCS® Industrial Cabling Solution enables optimized production, integration of production data, and enhanced SFP- and GBIC-based Ethernet switch and routing device accessibility and operation. These rugged, reliable multimode step-index fiber optic cables also provide an effective solution for common industry problems such as electrical noise, temperature fluctuation, high vibration, chemical exposure, and cable flexing.
OFS ruggedized industrial cables are compatible with our easy-to-use crimp and cleave LC (SFP transceivers) and SC (GBIC transceivers) connector technology.
GiHCS, LSZH/OFNR Riser Rated Industrial Cables are built for fast (100 Mb/s) and gigabit Ethernet (1000 Mb/s) speeds and operate in a temperature range of –20 to 80 °C. They have high tensile strength, are available for indoor or outdoor use, are RoHS and REACH compliant, and are resistant to abrasion, vibration, and chemicals.
The Crimp & Cleave LC and SC connector kits allow for quick, easy terminations, with no power, epoxy, gels, or polishing required; you do not have to be a fiber optic expert to install one of these. Just crimp, cleave, and leave.
Implementation of Smart Factory initiatives and the growing IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things) are making OFS HCS optical fiber the choice for:
- Future higher capacity system upgrades
- Immunity to EMI interferences
- Superior performance under high temperatures
- Longer than copper or POF link distances
Robotics and Drag Chain:
OFS Fibers and cables are used in robots and their control systems, meeting the long term demands for torsion, flexing, strength and bend radius.
Drag chains are guides designed for surrounding and guiding cables as well as pneumatic or hydraulic hoses which are connected to moving machinery.
Wind turbine designers face many challenges in ensuring optimal system reliability and successful cable installation — electrical noise, widely fluctuating temperatures, high vibration, exposure to industrial oils, the need for rapid restoration of damaged cabling, and the ability to perform simpler modifications. OFS has engineered industrial fiber optic products to help mitigate these challenges.
Offering the durability needed for these critical applications, our versatile GiHCS® Industrial Cabling Solution provides seamless data integration within the control system and helps provide real-time operational data.
The engineers at OFS understand the needs of both photovoltaic (PV) and solar thermal farms, and we recognize the importance of reliable tracking of the sun in order to optimize the conversion of solar energy into electricity. Ruggedized fiber optic connections and easy-to-use field connectorization are crucial for the dielectric data links required in these applications.
Our GiHCS® Industrial Cabling Solution, with Crimp & Cleave LC, SC, and SC-RJ connector products, allows for quick, simple installation and repair of solar networks. The GiHCS system also allows for wide operating temperatures in exposed installations, is suitable for harsh environments, and features all dielectric, lightning-resistant designs. Our easy-to-learn, easy-to-use crimp and cleave LC and SC connectors are compatible with SFP (LC) and GBIC (SC) transceivers.
Electrical Current (Energy)
HVDC – Thyristor Triggering Controls:
At OFS we believe that with great power comes great responsibility. Transmission schemes of High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) are more efficient and have a greater capability than AC systems. If not properly harnessed, elevated amounts of charged energy can be dangerous. The proper protection of your conductive materials also ensures electronic noise will not scramble networks and IT systems. Imagine the ability to enjoy high NA optical fiber that captures more input power with very low bend-induced attenuation, and high coupling efficiency.
OFS offers a full slate of solutions for your HVDC needs. HCS® (Hard-Clad Silica) is a problem-solving, hard polymer-coated optical fiber system invented in the early years of the optical fiber industry. The revolutionary GiHCS® (Graded-Index, Hard-Clad Silica) optical fiber solution from OFS provides the end-user more bandwidth capability along with the added benefit of easy-to-use HCS optical fibers. OFS has developed and proven the robustness and simplicity of using optical fibers in a wide variety of non-traditional applications.
Current and Voltage Measurement:
The most common way to measure high voltage currents has traditionally been using bulky and heavy current transformers (CTs). These CTs, besides their size and weight, have several additional shortcomings as magnetic saturation and limited bandwidth cause them to often not give a true image of the primary current. Fiber optic-based devices that exploit the Faraday Effect or use other principles, have great potential as an attractive new technology for current measurement. OFS industrial HCS® optical fibers are part of these systems where they are require to perform in harsh environments, including extreme temperature ranges.
Arc Flash Protection:
New guidelines and standards put forward by international trade and safety bodies such as the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) and the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have helped raise awareness about the dangers Arc flash events. Arc-flash detection sensors provide a cost-effective way to reduce arc-flash energy by minimizing detection times.OFS industrial HCS® fibers are used in Arc Flash Detection Systems to detect and trip for an arc flash event in the shortest time possible, exceeding required mechanical properties and long term durability.
OFS industrial HCS® fibers are used in Arc Flash Detection Systems to detect and trip for an arc flash event in the shortest time possible, exceeding required mechanical properties and long term durability.
Electricity – Transmission and Distribution Networks:
For traditional transmission and distribution network needs, OFS offers its FTTx Solutions for Utility Energy:
- PowerGuide® AccuTube® ADSS Cable with AccuRibbon® Optical Ribbon for extra-high-fiber-count applications (up to 864)
- PowerGuide ShortSpan DT Cable the world’s first gel-free, completely dry ADSS cable
- PowerGuide ADSS Cable
- PowerGuide TR (Tracking Resistant) ADSS Cable for EHV applications (typically ≥ 115 kV)
- ADSS Cable Pole line attachment hardware and accessories:
- Dead-end assembly
- Tangent and suspension supports
- Downlead clamps
- Cable storage devices
- Vibration dampers
- Corona coils
Electricity – Substation Networks:
Optical fiber and bandwidth reliability are critical for successful substation management. OFS FTTx Solutions for Utility Energy offers various options for distributing fiber in traditional transmission and distribution networks. Substation solutions include:
Optical fibers, with their intrinsic EMI/ RFI immunity, are ideal for harsh electrical environments and are used as communication links in protection, monitoring, and control devices.
OFS products are used in electrical substation automation applications. The GiHCS® Industrial Cabling Solution with Crimp & Cleave LC and SC connectors and termination kits provide other distinct advantages in substation automation, enables Ethernet speeds, can offer lightning protection in an all-dielectric design. These fibers are also much lighter than traditional copper cables and enable more secure data connections for electrical substation automation and control.
Competitively priced and designed for minimal environmental impact, our HCS cabling solution allows for reliable connectivity, high bandwidth, and optimal performance in power generation, transmission, and distribution automation processes.
As metropolitan areas grow in complexity, the demand for intelligent systems increases. To facilitate public administration and improve quality of life, new and smarter solutions are necessary. In the Smart / Safe Cities concept, optical fiber networks expand existing operations (FTTH) and are used to interconnect services: schools, hospitals, traffic light systems, public security systems (civil defense, firefighters, police), etc. This interconnection is possible with passive optical network solutions which allow access of up to 10 Gb/s. The OFS product portfolio offers products to enable an optical network infrastructure of a Smart / Safe City based on PON (Passive Optical Network) technology.
- Urban mobility management
- Intelligent traffic control
- Intelligent parking lots
- Efficient public lighting
- Crisis management and disaster prevention, sensing
- Public health, education, transport and security services
- Measurements for energy management and distribution
- Intelligent measurement of the energy consumption
- Distribution automation
- Distributed management of renewable energy (wind, solar)
The Product Portfolio
AUTOMATION AND CONTROLS