Air-blown fiber vs. conventional cabling

PITTSBURGH — One of the most innovative network infrastructure solutions of the past decade has been air-blown fiber cabling.


Structured cabling

Our business partner and manufacturer of air-blown fiber, Sumitomo Electric, breaks down the difference air-blown fiber and conventional cabling.

Scalability & Network MACs

Air-Blown Fiber

  1. Keeps exact pace of emerging technology

  2. Blow out fiber and reuse anywhere in your network

  3. At speeds of up to 150 feet per minute, install any fiber type anytime and anywhere for easy and quick upgrades in a matter of minutes or hours

Conventional Cabling

  1. Requires installation of additional cable, often taking weeks or months to plan and install

  2. Once dark fiber is laid, it is not reusable… wasting investment dollars

  3. Upgrades reported to take up to “12 times longer and 10 times the cost” of the air-blown fiber solution

Capacity Control & Allocation

Air-Blown Fiber

  1. Minimizes the use of conduit space and provides virtually unlimited pathway, fiber, and bandwidth capacity

  2. Tube cables provide simple demarcation of network components, destinations, and ownership

Conventional Cabling

  1. Consumes conduit space, limiting network expansion, fiber count, and potential capacity

  2. Difficult to define and allocate capacity ownership for current and future applications

Planning & Budgeting

Air-Blown Fiber

  1. Eliminates forecasting future technology requirements

  2. Saves 70-90% of time and labor costs

  3. Fast and easy installation reduces planning time, increases responsiveness with quick project turnarounds, and controls recurring costs for positive ROI

Conventional Cabling

  1. Requires guessing future network growth and other unpredictable variables

  2. Extensive project planning slows turnaround, especially for emergencies and network restoration. High installation costs increase recurring costs, inhibiting ROI

Work Environments & Operations

Air-Blown Fiber

  1. Blowing fiber results in no work site disruption and reduces or eliminates network downtime

  2. Air-blown fiber can be “blown” easily anywhere at any time, including restricted access areas