AU751741B2 - Fibre optic splice holder - Google Patents

Fibre optic splice holder Download PDF

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Publication number
AU751741B2
AU751741B2 AU44877/99A AU4487799A AU751741B2 AU 751741 B2 AU751741 B2 AU 751741B2 AU 44877/99 A AU44877/99 A AU 44877/99A AU 4487799 A AU4487799 A AU 4487799A AU 751741 B2 AU751741 B2 AU 751741B2
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AU
Australia
Prior art keywords
splice
channels
holder
receiving
connections
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Ceased
Application number
AU44877/99A
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AU4487799A (en
Inventor
Yiqun Liu
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Whitaker Corp
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Whitaker Corp
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Filing date
Publication date
Priority to EP98116418 priority Critical
Priority to EP98116418 priority
Application filed by Whitaker Corp filed Critical Whitaker Corp
Publication of AU4487799A publication Critical patent/AU4487799A/en
Application granted granted Critical
Publication of AU751741B2 publication Critical patent/AU751741B2/en
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Description

AUSTRALIA

Patents Act 1990 The Whitaker Corporation

ORIGINAL

COMPLETE SPECIFICATION STANDARD PATENT Invention Title: Fibre optic splice holder The following statement is a full description of this invention including the best method of performing it known to us:- 1/I This invention relates to a holder for holding optical fibre splices arranged in a splice tray.

A splice tray for optical fibres is described in US 5,473,724. Splice trays as described in the latter reference are for housing splice connections between optical fibres of single or multi fibre cables, the housing having a tray portion allowing an excess length of cable to loop around in the tray while ensuring a certain minimum bend radius of the cable, the tray further comprising a holder in the form of an insert assembled on a base wall of o.o.

the tray and having grooves longitudinally thereacross for receiving and holding the splice connections. There are various splice constructions that result in splice connections having different diameters. It is typical to provide separate and different holders that can be clipped to the base of the splicing tray, the different holders having different sized slots for receiving different sized 20 splices. The need to manufacture and handle different splice holders however increases costs and is a disadvantage for field operation.

In US 4,627,686, it is known to provide a fibre optic splice holder having longitudinally arranged stepped grooves that have different widths in order to received fibre splices -of different sizes. The holder of US 4,627,686 solves some of the above mentioned problems by incorporating grooves of different sizes in the same holder. One problem is that the number of splices retained in the holder is limited to the number of the largest splices that may be fitted in a juxtaposed manner.

It would be advantageous to provide holders with increased versatility and compactness whilst reducing the number of parts required for housing and securing splices of various sizes.

-2- It is an object of this invention to provide a versatile and compact optical fibre splice holder for implementation in a splice tray receiving optical fibre splice connections.

Objects of this invention have been achieved by providing an optical fibre splice holder according to claim 1. Disclosed herein is a holder for optical fibre splice connections, the holder comprising a plurality of first channels extending in a first direction across a base of the holder for receiving optical fibre splice connections of a first size in a juxtaposed arrangement, wherein the holder further comprises second channels extending in a second direction non-parallel to the first direction for receiving optical fibre splice connections of a second size 15 different to the first size.

Advantageously therefore, a particularly compact and versatile holder is provided, where splices of different sizes may be received by the same holder in a compact arrangement.

20 The holder may be provided with third or additional different sized channels, for example the channels of a third size arranged along, below and aligned with the first channels such that the third channels form a stepped recess along the bottom face of the first channels. Similarly, the second transversely extending channels may also be provided with stepped recessed fourth channels for receiving a splice connection of yet another size. Either of the first or second channels may be\stepped at their bottom wall into more than one recess such that more than four different sized channels are provided. The first and second channels may extend orthogonally with respect to each other although it is conceivable to provide angles of less than 900 (for example the channels may criss-cross each other at 450).

In another embodiment, the holder comprises a plurality of first and second channels for receiving -3respectively splices of first and second different sizes whereby the channels are provided on opposed sides of the splice holder base. The first and second channels may either be substantially parallel or transverse with respect to each other, and third and fourth different channels may be positioned transversely across the first and second channels respectively on opposed sides of the holder such that a large plurality of different sized channels on a single splice holder may be provided.

The channels may be in the form of substantially Ushaped slots having enlargened portions proximate the bottom face in order to clip (retain) the wire holders at ooo.

the bottom of the channel. The holder may be injection moulded as an integral plastic part that may be clipped to 15 the base of a fibre optic splicing tray for receiving the fibre optic wires therein.

Further advantageous aspects of this invention are set forth in the claims, or will be apparent from the following description and drawings.

Embodiments of this invention will now be described by way of example with reference to the accompanying drawings in which; Figure 1 is a top plan view of a splicing tray with a splice holder according to this invention; Figure 2a is a top plan view of a splice holder according to this invention receiving splice connections of first and third sizes; Figure 2b is a view similar to figure 2a of the splice holder receiving splice connections of a second size; Figure 3a is a view in the direction of arrow 3a of figure 2a; Figure 3b is a view in the direction of arrow 3b of figure 2b; Figure 4a is a view in the direction of arrow 4a of figure 2a; -4- Figure 4b is a view in the direction of arrow 4b of figure 2b; Figure 5a is a view in the direction arrow 5a of figure 2a; Figure 5b is a view in the direction of arrow 5b of figure 2b; Figure 6 is top plan view of a splice holder according to a second embodiment of this invention; Figure 7 is a view in the direction of arrow 7 of figure 6; Figure 8 is a view in the direction of arrow 8 of oeol figure 6.

:eooeo Referring to figures 1-5b, starting with figure i, a splice tray 2 for receiving and organising fibre optic splice connections comprises a tray portion 4 and splice holders 6 separate from the tray portion 4 and assembled on a base wall 8 thereof. The splice tray portion 4 is well known in the art and is for example described in US 5,473,724, and will therefore not be described in further detail.

A plurality of optical fibres 10 received within the tray portion 4 are spliced to a plurality of corresponding *...optical fibres 11 via splice connections 12. The splice connections 12 may come in a variety of different sizes and, as an example, in figure 1 there are shown splice connections of three different sizes: a splice connection of a first size 14; a splice connection second size 16; and a splice connection of a third size 18. The outer periphery of the splice connection may have a substantially circular, polygonal, elliptical or other shape although for simplicity only cylindrical splices are shown. When referring to size, this means the general radius or crosssectional area of the splice connection.

The splice holder 6 in this embodiment is injected moulded from a plastic material as a single integral part, and comprises a substantially flat or planar base 20 having a bottom or mounting face 22 and a top or splice connection receiving face 24 opposed thereto.

Recessed into the splice holder, from the splice connection receiving face 24, are a plurality of parallel and juxtaposed first channels 26 extending in a first direction the channels being substantially U-shaped and having roughly parallel opposed sides 27 and a bottom face 28. The sides 27 are formed by upstanding wall portions 30 that separate and define adjacent channels 26.

Proximate the bottom face 28 of the channel 26, the side walls 27 have slight recesses 32 that form a slightly enlarged lower portion of the channel. The slight enlargement serves to retain or clip splice connections 14 o. 15 of the first size therein. In order to provide a more compact arrangement of juxtaposed first size splice connections 14, adjacent channels have bottom faces 28 that are offset by a distance as best seen in figure This arrangement also provides greater resiliency in the clipping or retaining effect of the upstanding walls against opposed sides of the splice connections 14.

The splice holder 6 further comprises a plurality of second channels 34 recessed into the splice holder from the splice connection receiving face 24 towards the mounting face 22 in the form of roughly U-shaped channels defined by upstanding separating walls 36 having side faces 37 and a bottom face 38. The second channels 34 extend in a second direction transversely across the first channels 26, and in this embodiment the directions (X and Y) are orthogonal with respect to each other. The channels may however also cross each other at angles other than 900, for example between 300 and 90* Because the first and second channels 28, 34 extend across each other on the same side of the holder base 20, the separating walls 30, 36 extend (in the first and second directions Y) respectively) -6intermittently rather than continuously. The intermittent separating walls 30, 36 thus also have enhanced elasticity thereby improving resilient clipping of the splice connections in respective channels.

The second channels 34 have a different size to the first channels 26 and are adapted to receive the second size splice connections 16 therein. Similar to the first channels, the second channels have recessed sides proximate the bottom face 38 for- receiving and retaining the second splice connections 16 therein. The widened lower portion 40 of the channels 34 however extend from one side 42 of the splice holder to a position 43 proximate the opposed side 44 such that the position 43 defines a shoulder for positioning the second size splice connections 15 longitudinally (in the direction with respect to the splice holder 6. An end portion 45 of the splice connection 16 thus projects beyond the side 42 of the splice holder to enable the splice connection to be easily clipped or removed from the splice holder by lifting the end portion 20 45, which is more easily accessible. As may be noted in figure 2a, the first splice connections 14 also have end portions 48 that project beyond a side 49 of the splice holder for the same reason.

The splice holder 6 comprises third splice connection receiving channels 50 that are smaller than the first and second splice receiving channels 26, 34, the third splice receiving channels 50 extending from the bottom face 28 of the first channels 26 towards the splice holder mounting face 22. The third channels 50 thus form stepped recesses in the bottom of the first channel 26. If splice connections of a fourth size are to be received by the holder, it is also possible to provide the bottom of the second channel 34 with recesses in a similar manner. The third channels 50 receive the third size splice connections 18 therein, the channels 50 having in a similar manner to -7the first and second channels, slightly widened bottom portions 52 for clipping the third size splice connections 18 therein. The third splice connections 18, as best seen in figure 2, also have end portions 54 that extend beyond the splice holder side face 49 for easier clipping and removal in the channels The holder comprises a mounting ledge or extension 56 extending beyond the side wall 48 at the mounting face 22, the extension having mounting holes 57 (see figure 1) for fixing to complementary studs or other fixing means of the splice tray base 8. As best seen in figure 1, if splice connections of a first or third size 14, 18 are provided, *the splice holder 6 is oriented such that the first and third channels 36, 50 are aligned in the longitudinal 15 direction of the splice tray 2, but if splice connections of the second size 16 are provided, the splice holder is rotated by 900 such that the third channels 34 extend in the longitudinal direction of the splice holder. As the large splices 16 are received in channels 20 transverse to the smaller first and third channels, the smaller channels may be positioned in a compact arrangement independent of the size of the large splice connections. A particularly compact splice holder adapted to receive splice connections of different sizes is thus provided.

In the second embodiment shown in figures 6-8, the splice holder 6' is provided with first and second splice connection receiving channels 26', 43' recessed into opposed major surfaces 22', 24' of the splice holder 6' The base 20' of the splice holder thus extends centrally between the opposed first and second channels 26', 34' The form of the channels 26', 34' may be substantially identical to the channels 26, 34 of the first embodiment and will therefore not be described in further detail.

Splice holder 6' may be further provided with third channels 50' that are arranged between adjacent second -8channels 34', the third channels 50' thus defining a slot in the partition or wall 36' separating the adjacent second channels 34' Fourth and fifth channels of different sizes to the first three channels may extend transversely across the first, second and third channels 26', 34', 50' such that a large plurality of different sized channels may be provided in the splice holder The splice holder may thus resemble a "double-sided" splice holder with transverse channels as in the. first embodiment) recessed into opposed faces thereof. Depending on which size splice connections 14, 16, 18 are provided in the splice tray 2, the splice holder 6' is used on one side or .*.*.flipped over for use on the other side and oriented with the required channels aligned in the splice tray 15 longitudinal direction (L) A versatile and simple splice holder is thus provided in a cost-effective and compact manner.

a go a a

Claims (7)

  1. 2. The splice holder of claim 1 wherein the first and S' second directions are substantially orthogonal.
  2. 3. The splice holder of claim 1 or 2 wherein the first s20 and/or second channels are provided with enlargened lower portions proximate a bottom face (28, 38) of the channels for retaining or clipping the eeeto C....splice connections in respective channels.
  3. 4. The splice holder of any one of the preceding claims wherein the holder further comprises third splice connection receiving channels of a size different to the first and second splice receiving channels, the third channels extending along and aligned with a bottom face of the first channels the third channels having a size smaller than the first channels The splice holder of any one of the preceding claims wherein the second channels extend from one side of the splice holder to a position proximate but spaced from an opposed side of the holder such that a shoulder for positioning the splice connection in the second direction is provided.
  4. 6. The splice holder of any one of the preceding claims wherein the splice holder is an integral part moulded from plastic or similar material and separately mountable on a substantially flat base of a splicing tray.
  5. 7. The splice holder of any one of the preceding claims wherein the first and second channels are recessed from a same splice connection receiving face towards a mounting face.
  6. 8. A fibre optic splice tray for receiving and organising splice connections of optical fibres the splice tray comprising the splice holder of any one of the preceding claims, the splice holder mountable on a base of the splice tray in a first position where the first channels of the splice holder are aligned in a longitudinal direction of the splice tray, or in a second position where the second channels are aligned in the longitudinal direction of the splice tray.
  7. 9. A splice holder for receiving and holding splice connections of optical 20 fibres, the splice holder comprising a plurality of first channels for receiving splice connections of a first size in a juxtaposed arrangement, the splice holder o further comprising second splice receiving channels for receiving a plurality of splice connections of a second size different to the first size, wherein the first and second channels are recessed respectively into opposed faces of the 25 splice holder, the first and second °ooo -11- channels separated by a substantially central base portion The splice holder of the preceding claim wherein a plurality of third splice connection receiving channels are provided, the third channels positioned between adjacent second channels the third channels adapted to receive splice connections of a third size smaller than the first and second sizes. Oo o* o• 0 *oo ooo*
AU44877/99A 1998-08-31 1999-08-31 Fibre optic splice holder Ceased AU751741B2 (en)

Priority Applications (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
EP98116418 1998-08-31
EP98116418 1998-08-31

Publications (2)

Publication Number Publication Date
AU4487799A AU4487799A (en) 2000-03-16
AU751741B2 true AU751741B2 (en) 2002-08-29

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Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
AU44877/99A Ceased AU751741B2 (en) 1998-08-31 1999-08-31 Fibre optic splice holder

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AU (1) AU751741B2 (en)

Citations (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5428705A (en) * 1993-04-30 1995-06-27 Keptel, Inc. Apparatus for storing and organizing spliced optical fibers
US5519804A (en) * 1994-06-22 1996-05-21 At&T Corp. Universal splice tray
US5530786A (en) * 1995-05-30 1996-06-25 The Whitaker Corporation Holding for optical fiber splice couplings

Patent Citations (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5428705A (en) * 1993-04-30 1995-06-27 Keptel, Inc. Apparatus for storing and organizing spliced optical fibers
US5519804A (en) * 1994-06-22 1996-05-21 At&T Corp. Universal splice tray
US5530786A (en) * 1995-05-30 1996-06-25 The Whitaker Corporation Holding for optical fiber splice couplings

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Publication number Publication date
AU4487799A (en) 2000-03-16

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