Corning Announces Fiber-Optic Breakthrough

Corning, a major manufacturer of fiber-optic cable, said this week it had developed a new type of fiber that is substantially more rugged than standard fiber and is many times more bendable, without any loss in bandwidth integrity.

Corning helped invent low-loss optical fiber more than 30 years ago, and is now calling its most recent advancement “a game-changing technology for telecommunications applications” that will have a direct positive effect on everything from HD distribution to the home to broadband speeds.

The Corning, N.Y., company said standard optical fiber, which are miniscule strands of ultra-pure glass, loses its effectiveness to carry light each time it is bent while being installed in apartment and office buildings. This new fiber product, it said, experiences virtually no signal loss whatsoever; regardless of how it’s configured. The breakthrough could be especially beneficial to TV, broadband and telephony consumers living in condo and apartment structures, where wiring usually requires many 90-degree bends.

Corning’s new design is based on a nanoStructures-enhanced series of mirrors, invisible to the naked eye, and which, in effect, block light from leaking out when the fiber is bent or twisted.