In the United States, Halloween is a time when young children dressed as tiny ghosts, goblins and even superheroes knock on neighborhood doors, repeatedly yelling the benign threat of “trick or treat.”
With Halloween retail spending projected to reach $8.4 billion in 2016, this night has also become one of the biggest unofficial holidays of the year for adults, with parties and celebration galore.
However, on another Halloween night not so long ago, millions of unsuspecting New Englanders had no warning that a true utilities nightmare was about to unfold.
We invite you to read on as guest blogger Natasha Juhasz (OFS Social Media, PR and Project Manager), weaves her tale of “A Halloween Blackout in New England.”
Different applications and optical fiber types present varying requirements for fiber coatings. When specialty optical fibers are used in demanding conditions, the fibers require coatings that are sustainable when subjected to harsh circumstances.
In fact, the successful deployment of fiber in these environments can often depend far more on the fiber’s protective external coating rather than its internal optical design. Fibers may be under attack from high and low temperature ranges, excessive humidity, high pressure, aggressive chemicals, mechanical interactions or any combination of these elements.
A recent OFS white paper in NASA Tech Briefs evaluates the stability of commercially available and in-house formulated, acrylate-based coatings to help determine the optimum coating for a range of conditions. To read more, please go HERE.
The commercial use of optical fiber in harsh environments is continually growing. These applications include medical probes that undergo sterilization at elevated temperatures and distributed sensors in oil and gas pipelines and wells exposed to extreme heat and cold. For these fibers to be used successfully, researchers and manufacturers must address the issues of fiber performance and reliability under the harshest conditions.
However, current theories and knowledge on the strength and dependability of silica-based optical fiber have been based almost exclusively on experiments conducted in optical telecommunications environments. Moreover, these tests only used a relatively narrow range of temperatures. For usage in extreme environments, fiber developers and users need new data and information.
In a recent white paper from OFS Specialty Photonics, researchers describe a setup for testing the tensile strength of optical fiber when exposed to high temperatures. This paper also reports the initial results of dynamic tensile strength testing conducted on polyimide-coated optical fiber at elevated temperatures over various time intervals.
To learn more and access this white paper, CLICK HERE.