Fiber distribution frame introduction

The optical distribution frame enables fiber connections through single fiber jumper or patch cords between an optical cable and communication equipment in data center, or between two pieces of communication equipment.

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1. Introduction

The optical fiber distribution frame (ODF) is a key component in any optical communications system that uses optical fibers. Good ODF provides easy access and successful cable management in central office .

With contemporary fiber networks demand ever-increasing, ODFs are becoming an increasingly important part of the optic network infrastructure.

There are three different types of HDF. The first is the ODF type which supports optical fiber cables. The second is the optical-digital hybrid distribution frame which supports copper cables. The third and most versatile type is the power distribution type which can support both copper and optical fiber cables.

This type of HDF is ideal for small to medium sized applications such as Fiber-to-the-Home/Building/Premises, remote modules or wireless base stations.


2. Structure appearance

2.1 Standard size

There are three types of main distribution frame structures according industry standards: closed structure, semi-closed, and open architecture. The rack height is divided into three categories: 2600mm, 2200mm, and 2000mm. Its width should be an integer multiple of 120mm, and its depth should be 300mm, 450mm, or 600mm.

The deviation of the frame dimensions should not exceed ±2 mm; the verticality tolerance of the outer surface to the bottom reference plane should not exceed 3 mm.

2.2 Mechanical activity part

The door’s moving parts should be able to rotate, not get stuck, and be easy to construct, install and maintain. The opening angle of the door shouldn’t be less than 110°, and there should not be a gap of more than 3mm.

2.3 Bending radius of incoming fiber optic cable

The recommended amount of bending for an optical cable when it enters a rack is 15 times the diameter of the cable.

2.4 Rack structure

The box structure should be sturdy, the assembly process should be streamlined and consistent, and all fasteners should be secure. Edges of exposed areas should be rounded to avoid sharp edges.

2.5 Protective sleeves, pads, and bending radius of fiber core and optic pigtails

When the optical fiber is in the optical cable, it needs a protective cover and gasket. If it goes through a hole in a metal plate, or if it bends around a sharp edge, the radius of the bend should be at least 30mm.

2.6 The surface of the high strength rack

The coating should be smooth, have an even color, not sag or drip, and cover all metal parts completely with no bare spots. There should be no burrs or rust anywhere.

2.7 Text, graphics, symbols, and signs on structural installations

All the text, graphics, symbols, and signs on the protective device must be accurate and easy to understand.

3. Material

3.1 Corrosion resistance

Wall mount ODF materials must be anti-corrosive to avoid deterioration and degradation. If the material is not innately anti-corrosive, it must then be treated with an external method of protection like a coating. The chemical makeup of the high density ODF materials should remain stable when it is in contact with other commonly used equipment parts and pigtails. This will help to prevent any further damage or corrosion.

3.2 Anti-corrosion properties

The metal parts with a surface electroplating treatment in floor mount ODF must not have any visible rust spots on the appearance after a salt spray test of 48 hours.

3.3 coating treatment requirements

The adhesion of the coating to the substrate for metal structural parts treated with coating should not be lower than Grade 2 in GB/T9286. This means that there is a film at the intersection of the coating and the substrate, without delamination.

3.4 Durability

Rack mount ODF parts that are in contact with optical fibers or pigtails should be durable enough to withstand normal use.

4. Classification

4.1 Unitary type

The unitary type fiber optics distribution frame installs multiple units on a rack, each being an independent optical fiber distribution frame. This type of distribution keeps the frame characteristics of original small and medium-sized optical fiber distributions, while also providing space utilization through structural deformation of the rack.

In the early days of large-capacity Optical Fiber Distribution Frames (OFDF), it was common to see structures like these. However, modern ideal solution has been developed that do not have these same problems.

4.2 drawer

The drawer-type optic distribution frame also divides a rack into multiple units, and each unit consists of one to two drawers. When welding and adjusting the wire, you can pull out the corresponding drawer to work outside plant. This will give you plenty of space to work so that each single unit does not affect any other optical network units.

The drawer is equipped with a locking device that stabilizes and precision-operates the unit, as well as ensures the safety of connecting devices. This optical fiber distribution frame provides a lot of space for the safe operation of optical line terminals. However, it doesn’t provide the greatest convenience in arranging or storing optical connecting lines. This rack is currently the most common form.

4.3 Modular

The modular design structure of the optical fiber distribution frame is designed to allow various functional modules to be placed in a common rack. This provides for greater flexibility and helps passive optical network meet their specific needs.

The fiber splicing, distribution line, connecting line storage, and other functional operations of optical cables can be completed in each module respectively. The modular cassettes is a new type of rack that uses front panel and drawers to make it easier to splice fibers on fiber splice trays. It also uses vertical cable troughs to keep the fibers from getting mixed up or disconnected.

Hence, it is the chosen type of high-capacity optical fiber distribution frame by many; however, its cost is more expensive than others. The selection of an optical fiber distribution frame is crucial and complicated. All localities should take various factors into account according to their specific conditions before making a final decision. After much understanding and comparison, pick the one that can satisfy current needs with room for future development to get the most value out of your purchase.

5. Feature Request

5.1 Optical cable fixed protection

There should be optic cables entry device that attaches and protects the outer sheath of outdoor cables on the rack. This will prevent any damage to both the outside metal of cables as well as safeguard reinforcing cores from being damaged by high voltage. The metal frame surrounding the optical cable should also be insulated to provide protection.

5.2 Fiber termination function

The fiber optic termination device is useful for easy operation, construction, convenient installation of optical connectors, and maintenance of optical fiber core and pigtail splicing. It fixates and protects the joint from external force-displacement damage so that the coiled optical fiber core and pigtail are not damaged.

5.3 Line adjustment function

The optic connectors make it easy to schedule the maximum number of cores in indoor cables and change the order of optic transmission.

5.4 Fiber core protection

After opening and stripping the active optical cable, there is a protection device on the fiber core. After fixing, the introduced optical fiber has a termination device.

5.5 capacity

The number of optic adapters should determine the capacity of each rack and unit, as specified in the product enterprise standard. The full-range optical fiber termination device, storage device, and optic cabl connections distribution device should be configured as a set.

5.6 Identification record function

All racks and units should be clearly labeled with identification devices that easily identify the fiber core serial number or transmission path sequence. These recording devices should also be easy to change if needed.

5.7 Fiber storage capabilities

There should be enough space in the rack and optic management unit to store all of the remaining fibers.

6. How to choose a rack

1. Where is the fiber patch panel boxes mounted? The fiber optic patch panel is usually installed in a 19” rack, but can also be directly mounted on the wall for small installations.

2. You should leave extra space for distribution cables. This will prevent them from being pulled and broken in the distribution frame, from being stressed too much, and from being pulled out of the frame.

3. Does this system have any form of protection? A complete optical fiber distribution frame should include some means of protecting the fibers inside.

4. Universality Different couplers should be compatible with as many types of distribution panel as possible. The LC-type optical fiber distribution frame can be used with duplex LC/simplex SC/MTRJ-type optic adaptors. This would improve the usability of the product. This would greatly improve the usability of the product.

5. Can the structure be adjusted? This is still an area we’re looking to improve to make the product more user-friendly. Currently, there are three types of structures available for optical fiber distribution frames: wall-mounted, cabinet, and rack.

The wall-mounted type usually comes in small box form and is best suited for offices with fewer optical cables and fibers. Meanwhile, cabinets have a closed firm structure meaning fiber capacity is limited but they tend to look nicer.

Rack designs are often modular making them easier to adjust as needed.” Users can select the corresponding modules according to the fiber count and optic cable counts and flexibly assemble them on the rack. It is a future variations structure and can be used for future optical fiber distribution frames.

Functional development provides convenience. The optical fiber distribution frame should ideally be made from an aluminum profile frame to ensure it is structurally sound and has a pleasing appearance.

Its dimensions should match those of the standard racks used for transmission equipment, so as not to disrupt the arrangement of equipment in the room. The surface treatment process and color should also resemble that of other computer room equipment, to maintain the aesthetic appeal of the space.