Canadian Patents Database / Patent 2029592 Summary

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(12) Patent: (11) CA 2029592
(54) English Title: OPTICAL CONNECTOR HOLDER ASSEMBLY
(54) French Title: ENSEMBLE DE PORTE-CONNECTEURS OPTIQUES
(51) International Patent Classification (IPC):
  • G02B 6/44 (2006.01)
(72) Inventors :
  • DEBORTOLI, GEORGE (Canada)
(73) Owners :
  • SIECOR CORPORATION (United States of America)
(71) Applicants :
  • DEBORTOLI, GEORGE (Canada)
(74) Agent: GOWLING WLG (CANADA) LLP
(45) Issued: 1998-03-31
(22) Filed Date: 1990-11-08
(41) Open to Public Inspection: 1992-05-09
Examination requested: 1992-11-12
(30) Availability of licence: N/A
(30) Language of filing: English

English Abstract




A connector holder assembly for holding optical
connectors in which a plurality of holders are disposed in
a stack. Each holder has optical connectors in mounting
positions at a front end region of the holder and rear ends
of these connectors are connected to optical fibers disposed
in coils in a storage facility. Provision is made
for holding the holders in the stack, this provision
comprising two rigid members one on each side of the stack,
the rigid members being urged against the stack. The
optical fibers in the storage facilities of all of the
holders may be provided by a single or optical cable.


French Abstract

Porte-connecteurs servant de support à des connecteurs de fibres optiques et permettant d'en empiler un certain nombre. Des connecteurs sont montés sur le côté avant de chacun des porte-connecteurs. Les parties arrière des connecteurs sont reliées à des fibres optiques enroulées et disposées dans un dispositif de stockage. Un dispositif permettant de maintenir les porte-connecteurs empilés comprend deux éléments rigides, un sur chaque côté de la pile, dont le rôle est d'exercer une pression sur la pile. Les fibres optiques situées dans les dispositifs de stockage de chacun des connecteurs peuvent provenir d'un seul câble optique.


Note: Claims are shown in the official language in which they were submitted.


17
WHAT IS CLAIMED IS:

1. A connector holder assembly for holding
terminal connectors for optical fibers comprising:
a plurality of planar connector holders disposed
in a stack, each holder comprising a front end region, a
rear end region, a storage facility for the storage of a
plurality of coiled lengths of fiber with the coils in the
planes of the holder, and a mounting region disposed at the
front end region of the holder and comprising a plurality
of connector mounting positions disposed in a series which
extends from mounting position to mounting position along
the front end region of the holder;
a plurality of optical connectors located in the
mounting positions in each holder with an end of each
connector facing forwardly from the front end region of the
holder;
a plurality of optical fibers each having a
length extending outwardly from each holder and a length
stored in coils in the storage facility and optically
connected to a rearward facing end of an individual
connector;
and a means for positioning and retaining the
holders in the stack with a fixed vertical relationship and
the front end region of the holders overlying one another,
said positioning and retaining means detachably connected
to the stack of the holders.

2. A connector holder according to claim 1
wherein the positioning and retaining means comprises two
rigid members disposed one on each side of the stack of
holders, the rigid members urged against the sides of the
stack by an urging means extending across the stack from
one rigid member to the other.

3. A connector holder assembly according to
claim 2 wherein each of the rigid members has one end
received in a registration position with a holder at one

18
end of the stack and the other ends of the rigid members
are urged towards each other by the urging means so that
the urging means and the registered ends of the members
serve to hold the members against the sides of the stack.

4. A connector holder assembly according to
either of claims 2 and 3 wherein the urging means comprises
a flexible severable tie member extending around the rigid
members to urge them towards the stack.

5. A connector holder assembly according to
claim 3 wherein said holder at the end of the stack has a
recess facing outwardly from the end of the stack and
spaced from each side surface of the stack, and the one end
of each rigid member extends around a respective side of
the stack and is received in registration with the recess
and with the rigid member engaging the side of the stack.

6. A connector holder assembly according to
claim 5 wherein during removal of the positioning and
retaining means, each rigid member is removable from the
stack by pivotal movement of the member away from the
associated side of the stack and about said end in
registration with the recess.

7. A connector holder assembly according to
claim 2 wherein the rigid members locate the holders in
vertical alignment and at specific relative vertical
positions.

8. A connector holder assembly according to
claim 7 wherein the vertical alignment and specific
relative vertical positioning of the holders is provided by
interengagement of ribs and rib engaging grooves provided
upon the holders and the rigid members.

9. A connector holder assembly according to
claim 8 wherein the holders have first ribs which extend

19
vertically in the stack and the rigid members are formed
with vertical grooves which register with the first ribs to
locate the holders in vertical alignment, the holders also
having second ribs which extend horizontally in the stack
and are registered within spaced horizontal grooves in the
rigid members to provide the relative vertical positions of
the holders.

10. A connector holder assembly according to
claim 2 wherein, for each holder, the lengths of a plurality
of optical fibers extending outwardly from the holder
are housed together within a tube and the tubes are held
against one of the rigid members.

11. A connector holder assembly according to
claim 10 wherein the tubes form part of an optical cable
and the optical cable is held against the one rigid member.

Note: Descriptions are shown in the official language in which they were submitted.

20295q2

OPTICAL CONNECTOR HOLDER ASSÉMBLY
This invention relates to optical connector
holder assemblies for optical fibers.
Connector holders for optical fibers are known
5 primarily through publications in patent specifications,
but also in a few commercially available designs. In U.S.
Patent 4,792,203, for example, a holder structure is
described in which a storage space is provided for optical
fibers entering the structure from an incoming cable and
10 optical connectors are mounted on an arm located at the one
side of the holder. The optical fibers are connected each
to one end of each connector. Other optical fibers exit
from the other ends of the connectors and also pass through
the storage space of the holder before proceeding as dis-
15 tribution fibers to telecommunications equipment in acustomer's premises. A plurality of such holders are
mounted in a housing and are pivotally attached so as to be
movable into a withdrawn or use position within the housing
or into an access position pivoted at the front of the
20 housing for maintenance purposes.
In a further structure, such as described in
German Offenlegungsschrift 2735106, a housing carries a
tray which is pivotally mounted for movement in and out of
the housing. Incoming optical fibers are stored within the
25 tray and are connected to pigtail fibers also stored within
the tray. The pigtail fibers extend from the tray to pig-
tail connectors mounted at the rear of the housing.
In a recent U.S. Patent 5,071,211
in the name of G. Debortoli and entitled "Connector
30 Holders and Distribution Frame and Connector Holder
Assemblies for Optical Cable", connector holders are
described which are extremely convenient in use both for
obtaining access to the optical fiber connectors and also
for the fibers themselves. As described in the latter
35 specification, when these holders are mounted in receiving
stations in a distribution frame, an increased density of
connectors is provided per frontal unit area of frame. In
the -connector holders as described in U.S. Patent
5,071,211 the connectors are mounted at a front end
40 region of the holders so as to be located at the front of a

2~9J jL

distribution frame in use with one end of each connector
faces forwardly for ease of connection of additional
fibers., The connector holders described in the aforemen-
tioned U.S. Patent have connector guards which
5 extend across the front end region of the connectors so
that with thé holders in use, the guards deflect any light
beam exiting from a connector to which a fiber is not con-
nected at the front of the connector.
While it is found that connector holders as
10 described in the aforementioned U.S. Patent are
commercially acceptable for the advantages of connector and
fiber access and also for the relatively high density of
connectors, it is believed that an inordinate amount of
time is spent on-site by an assembler in assembling con-
15 nectors and fibers into each holder, mounting each holder
into a distribution frame, and then optically connecting
incoming fibers to outgoing fibers through the connectors.
This large amount of time is also influenced by the large
number of holders incorporated into a distribution frame.
It would be particularly advantageous if an
assembler could more quickly deal with the assembly of the
holders into the frames together with their connectors and
mounted fibers.
According to the present invention, there is
25 provided an optical connector holder assembly for holdingoptical connectors for optical fibers comprising:- a plur-
ality of planar connector holders, each holder comprising a
front end region, a rear end region, a storage facility for
the storage of a plurality of coiled lengths of fiber with
30 the coils in planes of the holder, and a mounting region
disposed at the front end region of the holder and compris-
ing a plurality of connector mounting positions disposed in
a series which extends from mounting position to mounting
position along the front end region of the holder; a plur-
35 ality of optical connectors located in the mounting posi-
tions in each holder with an end of each connector facing
forwardly from the front end region of the holder; a plur-
ality of optical fibers each having a length extending

. ~
7~ ~ ~ '

202g59~




outwardly from each holder and a length stored in coils in
the storage facility and optically connected to a rearward
facing end of an individual optical connector; and a means
for positioning and retaining the holders in a stack with a
5 fixed vertical relationship with the front end regions of
the holders overlying one another, said positioning and
retaining means detachably connected to the stack of
holders.
The inventive assembly may be built in a factory
10 environment and dispatched to the site of a distribution
frame for assembly of the holders into the frame. Thus, an
assembly is provided with connector holders which have
previously been provided with fibers in their storage com-
partments and optical connectors connected by their rear
15 ends to these fibers. It is a relatively simple matter for
the assembler then to position the holders in receiving
stations in the distribution frame. To provide an optical
connection through the connectors, the assembler then con-
nects the outwardly extending lengths of fibers in series
20 with other fibers on one side of the holders, preferably by
splicing, and the forwardly facing ends of the optical
connectors are connected to further fibers. The fixed
vertical relationship of the holders in the stack pre-
ferably substantially corresponds to their vertical posi-
25 tion in the distribution frame.
In a preferred construction of the assembly, rearend regions of the holders project outwardly beyond the
positioning and retaining means whereby the rear end
regions may be located within the respective receiving
30 stations of the holders, the positioning and retaining
means may then be removed from the stack and the holders
may then be inserted fully into the receiving stations. In
order to prevent relative movement of the holders after
insertion of their rear end regions into the respective
35 receiving stations, it is preferable to dispose the posi-
tioning and retaining means at or adjacent front end
regions only of the holders in the stack so that most of
the length of each holder may be inserted into its receiv-


2029592




ing station before removal of the positioning and retainingmeans.
In the assembly, the positioning and retaining
means preferably comprises two rigid members disposed one
5 on each side of the stack of holders, the rigid members
urged against the sides of the stack by an urging means
extending across the stack from one rigid member to the
other. For convenience and for speed of operation, the
urging means comprises a flexible separable tie member
10 extending around the rigid members to urge them towards the
stack. Thus, the tie member is quickly severable to allow
for removal of the rigid members. In other constructions,
the urging means may be of more complex form, for instance,
a screw-threaded or over-center lever device to hold ends
15 of the rigid members against sides of the stack.
In order to position the holders in their desired
positional relationships, the holders and the rigid members
are preferably provided with ribs and rib receiving grooves
which register with one another to locate the holders in
20 vertical alignment. Other ribs and rib receiving grooves
are provided to hold the holders in relative positions
vertically. In a practical assembly, the ribs are provided
upon the holders and the grooves are provided upon the
rigid members.
According to the invention also, there is pro-
vided a method of assembling optical connector holders into
a distribution frame comprising:- providing an optical
fiber assembly for holding terminal connectors for optical
fibers the assembly comprising:- a plurality of planar
30 connector holders, each holder comprising a front end
region a rear end region, a storage facility for the stor-
age of a plurality of coiled lengths of fiber with the
coils in planes of the holder; and a mounting region dis-
posed at the front end region of the holder and comprising
35 a plurality of connector mounting positions disposed in a
series which extends from mounting position to mounting
position along the front end region of the holder: a plur-
ality of optical connectors located in the mounting posi-


2029592


tions in each holder with an end of each connector facingforwardly from the front end region of the holder; a plur-
ality of optical fibers each having a length extending
outwardly from each holder and a length stored in coils in
5 the storage facility and optically connected to a rearward
facing end of an individual optical connector; and a means
for positioning and retaining the holders in a stack with a
fixed vertical relationship and with the front end regions
of the holders overlying one another, said positioning and
10 retaining means detachably connected to the stack of
holders with rear end regions of the holders in the stack
projecting beyond the positioning and retaining means;
supporting rear end regions of the holders within a distri-
bution frame at receiving stations for the holders; and
15 removing the positioning and retaining means and then in-
serting the holders fully into their receiving stations.
Preferably, the distribution frame and the
holders coact to receive the holders by sliding reception
into the receiving stations. In this case particularly, it
20 is advantageous to dispose the positioning and retaining
means at or adjacent the front end regions of the holders
in the stack to enable the holders to be received for sub-
stantial parts of their lengths in the receiving stations
before removal of the positioning and retaining means.
One embodiment of the invention will now be
described, by way of example, with reference to the accom-
panying drawings, in which:-
Figure 1 is an isometric view from one side of a
part of a distribution frame and optical connector holder
30 assembly;
Figure 2 is a cross-sectional view through the
assembly of Figure 1 taken along line II-II in Figure l;
Figure 3 is an isometric view from one side of a
connector holder which is incorporated into the frame of
35 Figure 1;
Figure 4 is an isometric view of the underside of
the connector holder;

2029~9~


Figure 5 is a cross-sectional view taken through
the connector holder along line V-V in Figure 3 and showing
a part of the holder on a larger scale;
Figure 6 is a rear end view of the holder taken
5 in the direction of arrow VI-VI in Figure 3;
Figure 7 is an isometric view of a connector
holder assembly incorporating connector holders as shown in
Figures 2 to 6;
Figures 8 and 9 are isometric views from opposite
10 sides of a rigid member forming part of the assembly of
Figure 7;
Figure lo is a cross-sectional view taken through
the assembly along line X-X in Figure 7 and showing a
detail of the assembly;
Figure 11 is an isometric view of the assembly of
Figure 7 and showing the connector holders of the assembly
being assembled into the distribution frame shown in Figure
l; and
Figure 12 is a diagrammatic view of the distribu-
20 tion frame together with its connector holders showingoptical connections from the frame and within a building.
In the embodiment, as shown in Figure 1, an
optical fiber distribution frame 10 holds two vertical
banks 12 of planar connector holders 14 for connecting a
25 plurality of incoming optical fibers to outgoing optical
fibers. As shown in Figures 1 and 2, the distribution
frame comprises a rear wall 16 and remote side walls 18
which extend from the rear to an open front of the frame.
Between the side walls 18 are two other walls 20 which
30 extend forwardly from the rear wall 16 and lie in parallel
relationship to the side walls 18. In each bank 12, a side
wall 18 and its corresponding wall 20 define between them
receiving stations for the connector holders 14. The two
walls 20 are spaced apart as shown in Figure 2 to provide a
35 storage channel 22 for optical fibers leading from front
end regions of the connectors as will be described. The
distance between the walls 20 is sufficient to ensure that
where loops of fiber are to be disposed within the storage

2029592


channel then these loops will not have a bend radius below
a desired minimum. Each of the connector holders 14 is
insertable into a respective receiving station from the
front of the distribution frame and is locatable in two
S positions in the respective station, i.e. in a rearward
operative position as shown in Figure 2 and in full outline
in Figure 1, and a forward connector access position as
shown in chain-dotted outline in Figure 1. The arrangement
of the holders 14 in the distribution frame and the con-
10 struction of the distribution frame is basically similar tothat described in copending U.S. Patent 5,071,211

entitled
"Connector Holders and Distribution Frame and Connector
15 Holder Assemblies for Optical Cable" in the name of G.
Debortoli, et al.
Each of the connector holders 14 is basically of
the structure described in the above-mentioned copending
application. Holders in the right-hand bank 12 in Figure 1
20 are of opposite hand to those in the left-hand bank 12. In
the following description, a holder for accommodation in
the right-hand bank will be described with the under-
standing that the holders in the left-hand bank are of
opposite hand.
Each tray 14 of the right-hand bank is of planar
configuration as shown in Figure 3 and has a planar base 24
(Figures 3, 4 and 5) in the plane of the holder, the base
24 being bordered by side walls 26 which extend to both
sides of the base in the depth direction of the holder. At
30 a front end region of the holder is provided a mounting
region 28 for optical connectors 30 to be positioned
laterally spaced from one another across the width of the
holder frame from one side wall 26 to the other. On one
side of the base and between the side walls 26 there is
35 provided a storage compartment 31 (Figures 4 and 5) for
incoming optical fibers stored within a tube 32 which is
one of a plurality of tubes 32, the tube extending through
an inlet 35 to provide an outwardly extending length 37.


,,

2029592


The inlet 35 is laterally at an edge of a side 26, i.e. at
the top side of the inlet in Figure 4, so as to permit the
tube 32 to be inserted into the inlet. The storage com-
partment 31 extends between the mounting region 28 and a
5 rear end wall 34 at a rear end region of the holder, the
rear end wall extending between the side walls 26. The
compartment 31 is provided with a cover 36 which covers
substantially the whole of the compartment 31 except the
surrounding edges. The cover 36 is movable at right angles
10 to its plane between an inner operative position as shown
in Figure 4 and a slightly retracted position (not shown)
in which it stands upwardly from the walls 26 to enable the
tube 32 to be passed laterally between edges of the cover
and ends of the walls 26 during assembly of the tube into
15 the compartment. The cover is mounted upon a central
structure shown at 38 in Figure 4 and is locatable in its
operative and retracted positions by latches 40. Localized
flanges 42 extend inwardly into recesses in the cover-36 so
as to distort the gap around the cover to render it im-
20 possible for a tube to be removed with the cover in itsoperative position.
On the other side of the holder as shown in
Figure 3 a second compartment 44 is provided. This com-
partment also extends from the mounting region to the rear
25 end 34 of the holder.
The base 24, as shown in Figure 5, extends down-
wardly at an inclined front end 46 so as to define one side
of a recess 48 which extends from side-to-side of the
holder at the mounting region 28, the recess being provided
30 to accommodate the connectors 30 in their side-by-side
positions. As described in the aforementionéd U.S. Patent
each connector 30 is held by a connector mount 49 which is
provided with a forwardly facing foot 50 (Figure 5) which
is to be disposed under an overhanging element 52 at a
35 front side of the recess. The other end of each connector
mount has a flexible latch 54 which is received through a
hole 56 in the base of the recess, the latch then engaging
beneath the inclined side 46 to hold the connector mounts

',~ ',,~ .,-;
. . ~

2029592


in position. Within the recess are provided a plurality of
ribs 57 which are laterally spaced apart across the width
of the holder and extend in a direction from the front end
region towards the rear end region.
The two compartments are connected at the rear
wall 34 of the connector by interconnecting passage 62 (see
Figure 6) to enable the tube 32 to pass from one com-
partment to the other.
In the other compartment 44, a splice block 64
10 (Figure 3) is provided for connecting incoming optical
fi~ers to pigtail fibers, the other ends of the pigtail
fibers being provided by the connectors 30.
Each holder 14 also comprises a connector guard
66 mounted at its front end. Generally the guard is as
15 described in the U S Patent referred to above in
that the guard 66 has two sides 68 and 70 and a front 72
which extends across the width of the holder. The two
sides 68 and 70 are hinged so as to be movable between an
upper connector guarding position in the plane of the
20 holder as shown in Figure 3 and a downward position (not
shown) removed from the guarding position.
The guard 66 and the mounting for the guard
differ however from the previous U.S Patent in the follow-
ing ways.
The guard is pivoted in front of the mounting
region 28 upon two forward extensions 74 of the side walls
26 at positions 76 and is normally retained in the guarding
position by domed protrusions 78 on free ends of the arms
74, the domed protrusions extending into holes in the side
30 walls 68 and 70. To move the guard 66 into and out of the
guarding position, downward or upward pressure on the front
of the guard is sufficient so as to cause the walls 74 to
flex inwardly and cause the protrusions 78 to move into or
out of the respective holes in the side walls 68 and 70. A
35 space defined between the mounting region 28 and the front
72 of the guard has an inlet provided between the front 72
and an arcuate extension 80 of the side wall 70. The
arcuate extension 80 extends laterally sideways from the

2029!~92

side 70 and the holder and provides a means for limiting
the minimum bend radius of fibers extending from the space
while allowing them to pass rearwardly of the holder. The
arcuate extension 80 is spaced slightly rearwardly of the
5 front 72 of the guard to provide the inlet.
Means for limiting the minimum bend radius of
optical fibers in the space is provided for ends of fibers
as they extend from forward facing ends of the connectors
30 when they change direction to pass through the inlet.
10 The means for limiting the minimum bend radius at this
position comprises a plurality of arcuate vanes 82 (Figure
3) which are disposed in spaced positions across the width
of the holder and are supported each by one end upon a
flange 84 extending rearwardly from the front 72. The
15 vanes 82 extend upwardly from flange 84 and are suitably
positioned relative to respective mounting positions for
the connectors 30 so that ends of optical fibers in the
space and extending to the connectors 30 engage against a
convex surface of a respective vane as it changes direction
20 towards the inlet. With the convex surface of each vane
formed to provide a desirable minimum bend radius for the
fibers, then no undue mechanical stresses or attenuation
will take plane in fibers engaging these surfaces.
In the following description which is concerned,
25 in this embodiment, with an exemplification of the inven-
tion, a connector holder assembly 86 for simplifying the
assembly of connector holders into the distribution frame
will now be described. This assembly provides connector
holders 14 for the right-hand bank 12 of holders. As shown
30 in Figures 7 and 10, the assembly 86 comprises a plurality,
namely four, holders 14 disposed in a vertical stack. It
should be understood that while four holders are described
in the assembly 86, any number of stacked holders may be
incorporated dependent upon their handleability.
Each of the holders 86 has been previously
fitted, before incorporation into the stack, with a plura-
lity of connectors 30 (Figures 3 and 5) in their side-by-
side positions in the mounting region 28. Also, each

2029592


holder has been previously provided with its own optical
fiber storage tube 32 with its outwardly extending length
37, the tube extending through the inlet 35 (Figure 4) and
extending in coiled form around the compartment 31. The
5 tube passes from the storage compartment 31 through the
interconnecting passage 62 (Figure 6) and into the storage
compartment 44, the tube having an end which is held to the
holder at position 87 by a strain relief. A plurality of
fibers 88 (Figure 2), one for each connector, extend from
lO the tube end and coil around the compartment 44 before
being spliced at the splice block 64 to pigtail fibers 90
which form pigtails with the connectors 30 to which they
are optically connected.
With all the four holders 14 equipped with fibers
15 and connectors in the above way and with hinged covers 91
of the holders (Figure 3) positioned to cover the com-
partments 44, the four holders are stacked. This
necessarily involves having the guards 66 in their guarding
positions shown in the figures. Conveniently, each of the
20 tubes 32 forms part of an optical cable 94 (Figure 7) with
all of the cable terminating except for the tubes 32 so
that the projecting outwardly extending lengths 37 and the
parts of tubes 32 within the holders are provided for con-
nection to the connectors 30.
The holders 14 of the assembly 86 are held in
their stacked positions by a positioning and retaining
means detachably connected to the stack. This position and
retaining means comprises two rigid members 96 disposed one
on each side of the stack. Each member as shown in Figures
30 8, 9 and 10 comprises an elongate stack engaging portion 98
which is disposed vertically of the stack with the members
96 disposed directly outwardly of the mounting region 28.
Each holder 14 in the stack has, on its underside, two
recesses 100, one recess for each holder only being shown
35 in Figure 10. The recesses for each holder are disposed
one at each end of the mounting region 28 and are spaced
from the side surface 102 of the holder. Thé lowermost
holder 14 of the stack has its recesses 100 facing out-


2029~92
12
wardly, i.e. downwardly from the stack. Each rigid member96 has a lower end which turns around and upwardly as a
lipped flange 104 (Figures 8 and 10). With each rigid
member in a stack supporting position (Figure 7) i.e. one
5 on each side of the stack, the lower end of the rigid
member, i.e. the lipped flange 104, extends around a
respective side of the stack and the lipped flange engages
and registers within the respective recess as shown by
Figure 10.
The rigid members are assembled onto the stack
with each member initially inclined slightly outwards from
the stack and with the lipped flange engaging within the
respective recess 100. The rigid members are then pivoted
upwardly into engagement with the sides of the stack (Figu-
15 res 7 and 10) and are held in this position by an urging
means which pulls the upper ends of the rigid members
towards each other and against the sides of the stack.
This urging means comprises a flexible severable tie member
106 (Figure 7) of known plastics structure which passes
20 over the stack and through apertures 108 (Figures 8 and 9),
at top ends of the stack engaging portions 98, to provide a
continuous band.
The rigid members 96 locate the holders 14 in
vertical alignment in the stack and at specific relative
25 positions vertically. Vertical alignment and positioning
is provided by interengaging ribs and rib engaging grooves
which may be provided alternatively upon the holders or
upon the rigid members 96. In this embodiment, however, on
the holders short vertical ribs 110 (Figures 3 and 4) ex-
30 tend outwards from the sides of each holder. The ribs 110
at each side are received within a vertical groove 110
(Figure 8) which extends vertically from end-to-end of a
respective stack engaging portion 98 and the holders are
thus vertically aligned.
Vertical positioning is provided by other ribs
and grooves. As shown by Figures 3, 4, 7, 10 and 11, each
holder 14 has on each side wall 26 an outward horizontal
flange 114 which extends from and joins the respective rib

2~29~92


110 to the rear end of the holder. The ribs 114 of each
holder are slidable upon horizontal support surfaces of
supporting track guides (not shown) which are carried in
fixed positions upon the walls 18 and 20 of the distribu-
5 tion frame and extend from front to rear of the frame.
Thus, each holder is movable into and out of its respective
receiving station by horizontal sliding movement through
the front of the frame. The horizontal support surfaces
are vertically spaced just sufficiently to provide slight
10 vertical clearance between holders 14 to allow for their
horizontal movement within the frame without interfering
with one another. The ribs 114 are received in the
assembly 86 within short horizontal grooves 116 of the
respective stack engaging portions 98 (Figures 8 and 9),
15 the grooves 116 interconnecting with the vertical groove
112. The grooves 116 are spaced apart so that the holders
114 at their front end regions are vertically located in
the slightly spaced positions they will assume when in the
frame. The rigid member 96 which is disposed at the side
20 of the stack of holders from which the tube length 37 ex-
tends, is provided with a tapered flange 118 extending
normal to the plane of the stack engaging portion 98 and in
a direction away from the grooves 112, 116. This flange
carries at its outer end, an integral channel 120 of V-
25 shaped section which extends away from the stack engagingportion 98 and in planes substantially parallel to those of
the stack engaging portion. The end of the jacket of the
cable 94 is held securely within the channel 120 (Figure 7)
by ties 122 which pass around the jacket and through aper-
30 tures in the channel for location purposes.
A plurality of the assemblies 86 are pre-built
under factory conditions for installation within a distri-
bution frame. The holders 14 within each of the assemblies
88 are assembled together each with its pigtail fibers go
35 extending from the connector 30 to the splice block 68 of
the holder. The cable 94 for each assembly has its optical
fiber tubes 32 extending from its end, these tubes extend-
ing into each of the four respective holders 14 and passing

2029592

14
around the storage compartments 31 and 44 in the manner
described above. The four holders 14 for the assembly are
then stacked together under factory conditions and the
rigid members 96 are then disposed in their positions at
5 the sides of the stack, as described above with regard to
Figures 7 and 10, prior to the flexible severable member
106 being placed in position to hold the assembly together.
The cable sheath is then secured to the V-shaped channel
120 by the ties 122 as described.
A plurality of the assemblies 86 are then offered
to the right-hand bank 12 of receiving stations in the
distribution frame. In each assembly, the rear ends of the
holders extend rearwardly beyond the rigid members 96 and
are thus locatable substantially in their respective
15 receiving stations in the distribution frame before the
retaining and positioning means need be removed. As shown
in Figure 11, previous holders 14 are already disposed in
their receiving stations within the right-hand bank of the
distribution frame and the outwardly extending ends 37 of
20 the tubes extend into their cables 94 which are stored in a
vertical storage channel 124 of the distribution frame.
All of these holders have been inserted from assemblies
such as 86 discussed above. The next assembly 86 is then
inserted into the frame as shown by Figure 11 and as the
25 holders 14 are moved rearwardly into their respective
receiving stations and just before the positioning and
holding means contacts the fronts of the previous holders,
the flexible tie member 106 is severed. This causes the
rigid members 96 to pivot outwardly under their own weight
30 away from the stack of members 14 as shown by Figure 11 so
that the rigid members may be removed. This operation is
preceded by severing the ties 122 which hold the cable to
the grooved member 120. The holders 14 of this sub-
assembly are then moved backwards into their receiving
35 stations so as to lie with the fronts 72 of their guards 66
vertically aligned with the previous holders. The corres-
ponding cable 94 is then positioned by the side of the
previous cable inside the storage channel 124.

2029592


Thus, the right-hand bank of the receiving
stations in the distribution frame are equipped with
holders in the manner described above. The left-hand bank
12 of receiving stations (Figure 1) is dealt with in
5 similar manner with holders of opposite hand from those
discussed in the embodiment.
As may be seen from the above description, it is
a relatively quick and simple matter for an assembler to
assemble holders complete with connectors and fibers into a
10 distribution frame without time and effort wasted on-site
to assembly each individual holder with its connectors and
fibers. It is advantageous therefore to form the
assemblies 86 under factory conditions and be able to store
them for subsequent use on-site in distribution frames.
Subsequently to the assembly of the holders 14
into the frame, patch cords 126 are connected from selected
connectors 30 in any holder 14 in the right-hand bank 12 to
any selected connector 30 in any holder 14 in the left-hand
bank 12. These patch cords as shown in Figure 2 hang down
20 in loops between the banks of holders within the vertical
storage channel 22 provided as shown in Figures 1 and 2.
The cables 94 are of sufficient length to extend
to a splice closure 128 for splicing to an incoming cable
130 entering into the building. Optical fibers within
25 tubes of the incoming cable 130 diverge within the splice
closure to be spliced to individual fibers of the tubes 94.
Figure 12 shows two tubes, by way of example, extending
from the distribution frame 10 to the splice closure 128.
The patch cords 126 then extend between the two banks of
30 holders and the cables 94 from the left-hand bank as shown
in Figure 12 extend into an equipment bay 132 in which the
optical fibers of that cable are connected to further
optical fibers which extend interiorly throughout the
building to individual items of telecommunications equip-
35 ment. The total on-site assembly time for the holders into
the distribution frame and connection through from an in-
coming cable to various telecommunications equipment is

2029~92

significantly shortened using the assemblies 86 of optical
connectors according to the embodiment.

A single figure which represents the drawing illustrating the invention.

For a clearer understanding of the status of the application/patent presented on this page, the site Disclaimer , as well as the definitions for Patent , Administrative Status , Maintenance Fee  and Payment History  should be consulted.

Admin Status

Title Date
Forecasted Issue Date 1998-03-31
(22) Filed 1990-11-08
(41) Open to Public Inspection 1992-05-09
Examination Requested 1992-11-12
(45) Issued 1998-03-31
Lapsed 2010-11-08
Correction of Expired 2012-12-02

Payment History

Fee Type Anniversary Year Due Date Amount Paid Paid Date
Filing $0.00 1990-11-08
Registration of Documents $0.00 1991-06-19
Registration of Documents $0.00 1991-06-19
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 2 1992-11-09 $100.00 1992-10-21
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 3 1993-11-08 $100.00 1993-10-13
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 4 1994-11-08 $100.00 1994-10-12
Registration of Documents $0.00 1995-11-01
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 5 1995-11-08 $150.00 1995-11-01
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 6 1996-11-08 $150.00 1996-10-23
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 7 1997-11-10 $150.00 1997-10-22
Final $300.00 1997-11-18
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 8 1998-11-09 $150.00 1998-10-21
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 9 1999-11-08 $150.00 1999-10-20
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 10 2000-11-08 $200.00 2000-10-19
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 11 2001-11-08 $200.00 2001-10-18
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 12 2002-11-08 $200.00 2002-10-18
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 13 2003-11-10 $200.00 2003-10-21
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 14 2004-11-08 $250.00 2004-10-21
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 15 2005-11-08 $450.00 2005-10-19
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 16 2006-11-08 $450.00 2006-10-17
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 17 2007-11-08 $450.00 2007-10-17
Maintenance Fee - Patent - New Act 18 2008-11-10 $450.00 2008-10-17
Current owners on record shown in alphabetical order.
Current Owners on Record
SIECOR CORPORATION
Past owners on record shown in alphabetical order.
Past Owners on Record
BELL-NORTHERN RESEARCH LTD.
DEBORTOLI, GEORGE
NORTHERN TELECOM LIMITED
Past Owners that do not appear in the "Owners on Record" listing will appear in other documentation within the application.

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Document
Description
Date
(yyyy-mm-dd)
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Cover Page 1994-03-30 1 21
Abstract 1994-03-30 1 24
Claims 1994-03-30 3 126
Drawings 1994-03-30 5 218
Description 1994-03-30 16 911
Cover Page 1998-03-06 1 53
Description 1997-07-02 16 825
Claims 1997-07-02 3 113
Representative Drawing 1998-03-06 1 18
Correspondence 1997-11-18 1 29
Fees 1996-10-23 1 59
Fees 1995-11-01 1 32
Fees 1994-10-12 1 26
Fees 1993-10-13 1 27
Fees 1992-10-21 1 26
Correspondence 1992-12-08 1 39
Correspondence 1995-11-02 1 15
Correspondence 1995-11-02 1 18
Prosecution-Amendment 1996-11-26 2 61
Prosecution-Amendment 1992-11-12 1 29
Prosecution-Amendment 1997-05-22 2 51
Prosecution-Amendment 1993-01-13 1 32