Splicing, the art of bridging OSP to ISP in an effort to provide hyperscale connectivity

As data center demand continues to increase and companies look to have redundancy at the local, national, and international levels, the need for seamless connectivity is vital. Information needs to pass quickly from building to building, without interruption regardless of where each building is physically located. In order to do this, companies rely on the expertise of splicers. But what is splicing and how does it help to bring the world’s leading hyperscalers together?

What is splicing?

Fiber splicing is the process of joining two fibers together. There are two types of fiber splicing – mechanical and fusion. Though mechanical is more of a thing of the past and not used very much today.  Fusion splicing involves joining two fiber cables together in an effort for light passing through the fibers to not scatter or reflect back by the splice. Ultimately creating the splice and the region surrounding it to be almost as strong as the intact fiber.

There are two types of fusion splicing – ribbon and single strand. As fiber cables are made from ribbons of fiber, typically 12 fibers per ribbon, splitting those fibers out to individually splice would be extremely time consuming. This is where ribbon splicing comes in as it allows the technician to splice entire ribbons at one time. Single strand splicing involves the joining of two single strands of fiber together.

Why do we splice?

Splicing is necessary in order to connect buildings on a campus, bring fiber from outside into a building, and to extend the length of a fiber. You need to have trained professionals who know how to join the fiber together to get a flash arc, which enables the fibers to be properly welded together leading to a strong connection and ultimately allowing data to be received and transmitted.

Hyperscalers need trained professionals who can help them connect with fiber outside the plant (OSP), along with a provider who can continue inside the plant (ISP). As the need for high speed, reliable data transmission continues to grow, companies need to insure they can connect their facilities within a campus along with across town, across country, or around the world. This is where splicing comes in to play.

Through splicing of fibers, companies are able to get the network connectivity they need to run their servers. The fibers, contained within a trunk line, allow for multiple signals to travel simultaneously between two points. Those points can be within a building, on a campus, across town, across the country, or around the world.

How is E2 Optics different when it comes to offering splicing services?

At E2 Optics, we look at splicing from both OSP and ISP. For us, splicing doesn’t stop at OSP. Our team of trained splicers can move to ISP with ease and help connect the outside fibers with those inside to get servers up and running quickly.

Our team of professionals handle all kinds of OSP situations. From natural disasters to car accidents to construction digs which snap lines, our team is quickly deployed to work on reconnecting cable to minimize down time.

On the ISP side, our team works on bringing the fiber from outside into the building. From the meet me room (MMR), our team is able to connect the various carriers where ever they are needed in the building. Once out of the MMR and into the data hall, our field technicians are able to take the fiber and connect to the racks and servers allowing for seamless connectivity.

How is E2 Optics preparing field staff?

Being able to agilely connect fiber is definitely a learned skill. For us at E2, we take training seriously and invest in each of our employees with various available training courses. For those wishing to learn the art of splicing, we have dedicated trainers available. Our trainers work hands on to teach our field technicians proper techniques to ensure they are performing the work precisely. We also have partnerships with the world’s leading fiber optic manufacturers, which allows us to bring them in to talk with our field staff and train them on the correct procedures to use with their equipment. Additionally, we provide proper safety training for both OSP and ISP. As safety is E2’s #1 Core Value, we pride our self on making sure each and every one of our team members knows proper procedures in order to minimize risk. This is extremely important when working OSP in manholes and heavily trafficked areas.

Investing in splicing to go the extra mile

As companies continue to expand their data center footprint, E2 understands the importance splicing plays in this expansion. As a result, we have invested in our splicing team to ensure they have state-of-the-art equipment. Our splicing team has their own splicing trailer and bucket trucks, which allows us to deploy swiftly and results in quicker turn around times. Ultimately increasing our customer’s speed to market.

As hyperscale and cloud computing continue on their expansion trajectory for the foreseeable future, splicing and connectivity will continue to be in demand. E2 Optics will continue to work with our customers and partners to bring state-of-the-art solutions to ensure seamless connectivity. And as always, we will provide our technicians with the training and certifications they need to provide our customers with top notch service.

For more information about career opportunities at E2 Optics, please visit our career page here.

Nick Cassady, Regional Operations ManagerNick Cassady
Northeast Regional Operations Manager

Nick Cassady is an experienced data center/hyperscale operations manager with more than 20 years of industry experience. His proven track record of delivering successful projects through strong leadership and team building skills has helped transform E2 Optics’ presences in the northeast region. Outside of work, Nick is an avid Ohio State University fan and golfer who enjoys spending time with his family.