Fiber optic manufacturing processes take advantage of UV curing’s fast speed (up to 2,500 meters/min) and process consistency for curing coatings and inks.
UV-curable coatings provide protection, flexibility and strength to the fiber as it is drawn. UV inks color code the optical fibers and protect the fibers against decomposition caused by cable gels, particularly in the case of multiple-fiber cable production. Ribbon matrix material, a UV-curable polymer, encapsulates multiple optical fibers to create ribbon cable.
Finished fiber optic cables, as well as other types of wire and cable, use UV inks for labeling and marking identification on jacketing. The jacket is the outer sheath, usually plastic or rubber based, that protects the wire or cable core and facilitates installation. High-speed inline marking provides branding and specifications for the wire or cable.