Spartanburg, SC – Seven AFL associates were recognized for receiving three patent awards for work developing new products and technologies. The patents support new technologies in optical connectivity and fusion splicing.

“These patents illustrate AFL’s dedication toward continual growth and product line development, as well as our associates’ personal drive and commitment to the company,” commented Grant Burns, vice president and general counsel for AFL.

AFL received a patent for “Optical Fiber Transition Structure.” Current technology requires various equipment and processes to complete a furcation structure and terminate connectors on the end of distribution cable. Users are not able to easily modify the transition assembly in the field. Additionally, predetermined cable lengths are provided. This invention describes a fiber optical cable transition and method of installing this transition onto a cable end to shorten manufacturing cycle time.

The second patent was for “Method and Apparatus for Aligning a Large Diameter Optical Fiber.” This technology was created as the LAZERMaster® laser splicing system was developed. The LAZERMaster uses a CO2 laser heat source rather than electrodes. Since the CO2 beam is invisible, aligning the fibers was difficult. This patent provided a way to align both fibers and splitters to the beam.

AFL also received a patent for “Module, Living Hinge,” an optical module design formed from a one-piece injection molded part with living hinges. The patent addresses the expense of the current technology but also the lack of flexibility in manufacturing different types of modules consisting of different numbers of inputs and outputs for the fiber optic transmission of signals.

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