Designing Fiber Optic Solutions for Industrial Harsh Environments

Designing Fiber Optic Solutions for Industrial Harsh Environments


Fiber optics are widely used in telecom and datacom, as well as in military aerospace applications. Despite these common applications, there are also some less known industries that are beginning to use fiber optics. No matter the use, fiber optic solutions should be optimized for the specific purpose of each installation. While the industrial market covers a range of applications – from manufacturing floors to mining to oil and gas – there are some key trends for designing industrial fiber optic solutions.

Fiber Optics for Manufacturing Floors

When it comes to manufacturing facilities, fiber optics are often used in network connections and machinery. In manufacturing, there is often limited space on the floor given to interconnect solutions that are critical to the function of the shop. When finding the right fiber optic solutions, you need something that will consume minimum space but offer high reliability so your machinery, network and instrumentation systems function properly. Designing for industrial applications, including the manufacturing floor, requires consideration of extreme environmental conditions.

Design Considerations for Industrial Applications

In industrial applications, fiber optics will often experience harsh environments and conditions that they must withstand. When designing for harsh environments, design engineers should consider the full range of temperature, from the lowest to the highest the optical components will be exposed to. This will allow designers to select the materials best suited to withstand fluctuating temperatures. 

Many industrial applications also are exposed to extreme pressure or shock and vibrations. In these environments, fiber optic components need to remain connected without running a risk of losing connection. 

Fiber optics should also be sealed to liquids and other debris that might cause problems. Proper design and care are needed to keep fiber from getting contaminated. Timbercon has the experience and design expertise to make sure your cables maintain quality and functionality for whatever application or environment you need.

These are the top three concerns when it comes to the extreme conditions that industrial applications may see. However, certain industrial applications add an extra level of complexity. When it comes to oil and gas explorations, fiber optics require very specific cabling and connectivity to ensure the utmost in safety, productivity and durability. 

Timbercon Capabilities for Industrial Fiber Optics

At Timbercon, our range of capabilities provides the seamless transition of products from development to full-scale production, reducing time-to-market and total cost. We focus on high quality custom solutions. Whether you have an existing design or product modification or need to design a custom fiber optic solution from scratch, our experienced team can help.

To learn about how Timbercon’s fiber optic solutions can be suited for your exact needs with your next industrial fiber optic or harsh environment application, contact us today to start a conversation.

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