In this episode JT talks about what Bend Insensitive Fiber is, its capabilities and what it really means to you. When installation spaces get smaller, this product is very helpful. However best practices still need to be followed! Data centers can utilize this product to ensure they do not violate insertion loss budgets



Hi, I’m Josh Taylor, Product Manager with CABLExpress. Today, we’re going to talk about bend insensitive fiber or BIF. Now, insensitive is a bit of a misnomer as this fiber is not completely insensitive to bending. It should be called “bend less sensitive,” but I guess that really just doesn’t sound as good.

What I am pointing out is while this is a major improvement, best practices still need to be followed. You just can’t ignore the bend radius limitations of the fiber. Bend radius is the minimum radius one can bend something, in this case, a fiber cable. Just in case you don’t remember from geometry, the radius is a line segment from the center to the perimeter of a circle, or half the diameter.

The rule of thumb with BIF is the bend radius is equal to ten times the outer jacket diameter of that cable. In this case, we have a 2 millimeter jacket. What we do, formulate this, 2 millimeter times ten is 20 millimeters.  Now, that’s just the radius. Let’s get the diameter. So, 20 times 2 is 40 millimeters or 1.6 inches.

Now, I’d recommend finding an object that you could visualize this with to make your installs go a lot more smoothly. In this case, 1.6 inches, it’s about the diameter of a paper towel tube.  Now, no big deal, but consider that before bend insensitive fiber, it was about like this, the average size of a popular sports drink.

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