Microduct FAQs provided by Lite Access Technologies:

Installation

Q1. What governs the position of the fibre-optic cable in the roadway or footway?
A1. Consultation with the Cities/Municipalities Streets and Engineering Department describes proposed location, description and depth of the network including proposed timetable for commencement and completion of the works and the dates and times during which the Company proposes to carry out such works. Further consideration will also be given to accommodate roadway or footway improvement schedules and may assist with
optimal depth determination.

Q2. What depth should the microduct be installed?
A2. Minimum depth required within NRSWA, New Roads and Streets Work Act 1991, is 20mm into unbound layer. Target depth 150mm hard infrastructure, 250mm soft infrastructure. Actual depth will be determined by the materials found within the structure and depth of third party plant.

Q3. What is the recommended installation procedure for the microduct?
A3. Most deployments are engineered to be placed between gutter pan and road surface and at a depth whereby the opportunity of network compromise is virtually non-existent. The microduct is laid directly into the 12mm or 17mm slot, backfilled to approx. 10mm above top edge of microduct with dry sand, limestone composite, flowable concrete or City/Municipal recommended material. Final reinstatement follows guidelines as determined by governing body and may include grade tarmac to approx 40mm of finished surface level followed by hot bitumen to finished level.

Q4. Does the microduct network need to be grounded?
A4. Any cable with non-current carrying metal components must be grounded at the building entrance or as soon as feasible. The 2002 NESC, section 31, under General Requirements Applying to Underground Lines and sub-section 315, Communications Protective Requirements, state that cable must be grounded if the following conditions apply:
· Lightning
· Contact with supply conductors with voltages exceeding 300V
· Transient rise in ground potential exceeding 300V
· Steady –state Induced voltage of a level that may cause personal injury

Q5. How many fibres are deployed?
A5. Lite Access’s MicroDuct Technique provides for up to 96 fibres in a single deployment. Depending on current requirements, clients are now able to purchase what is immediately needed. No longer does a client have to spend large amounts of capital for product and services that may never be used. Our future-proof solution enables clients to control the growth of their network by allowing additional fibre to be blown at any time.

Q6. How easy does the microduct network integrate with existing infrastructures?
A6. Lite Access’s fibre solution was designed to integrate with any type of existing infrastructure and technology. Lite Access’s fibre products are color coded in accordance with TIAIEIA-598A, “Optical Fibre Cable Color Coding”, and terminate into traditional splice enclosures most typically used within the Telecom Industry. Use of nonproprietary, common access chambers, handholes, manholes etc. enables integration of new and existing networks as well as availability and acceptability of product within cities and Municipalities. Lite Access’s microduct is also fully compliant with the requirements of CEI/IEC 60794-3-10, International Standard for Outdoor Cables enabling direct bury and aerial application use.

Q7. What is the life of the installed cable?
A7. Based on the life of the infrastructure in which the cable is placed, we anticipate a lifespan of greater than 20 years. Another consideration is that the cable can be completely replaced without affecting customers (provided that redundancy is deployed), giving the network a potentially endless life.

Maintenance

Q1. How susceptible to damage are 'LITE ACCESS’s microduct networks'?
A1. No damage has been experienced to Lite Access’s networks to date. Consultation with local authorities include consideration of existing route conditions including future build possibilities, road improvements etc. enabling the design and engineering of the
network in the safest and least vulnerable route. Once installed, detailed documentation including as-built drawings will be in the possession of the local authorities and client.

Q2. How can damage be avoided?
A2. Subscribing to 'call before you dig' services will prevent the majority of events. Also some education may be required for city maintenance teams who deal with footway and road repair to ensure detailed documentation and as built drawings have been obtained and properly analyzed. 'Man-made' or events having an identical impact on any type of deployment methodology - namely, related to utility maintenance and construction not following the correct procedures and checking registered 'as-built' documentation may be possible.

Q3. How does one locate a damaged or broken cable?
A3. In addition to as-built drawings and typical placement of the network between the gutter pan and road, Lite Access’s microduct contains an aluminum layer or tracer wire that can be used to locate the damaged cable. An OTDR (Optical Time Domain Reflectometer) can also be used to locate damaged fibres.

Q4. What happens if the fibre is damaged?
A4. In most cases, if the fibre has been damaged, the microduct network has also been compromised. Using specially designed connectors providing an air tight and water tight connection a new section of microduct is connected. The fibre can then be either spliced at the break location or the broken strands blown out and new fibre blown in.

Q5. What happens in the event of frost heave?
A5. Lite Access’s microduct technology was designed as a one piece conduit system containing full water barrier protection and conforming to or exceeding stringent crush test and tensile load parameters. Placement of the network in existing expansion joints such as gutter pan and road, and at depths within the unbound layer provides further protection from varying external forces.


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