Telecommunication rooms (TR) have long been used as critical consolidation points between backbone and horizontal cabling. Today, increasing lifecycle demands on modern facilities require architects, engineers, and contractors to provide facilities that adapt to the changing demands that building owners and IT personnel will require over the lifecycle of the building. Besides providing the critical function of holding telecommunications equipment, cross connect cables, and connectivity for areas of the building served by that TR, modern building automation (BAS) and security systems place evolving demands on the TR infrastructure. Much emphasis is directed toward the specification of equipment, cable connectivity, and cable management within equipment racks, but the selection of optimal cable routing and pathway solutions is typically given much less consideration.
Pathway installations within TRs tend to look similar from one project to the next, and it seems that a common blueprint is often replicated for the sake of simplicity and time tested functionality. Existing solutions meet basic requirements, but may not be optimized for the evolving demands of tomorrow’s smart buildings.
The design of common ladder style pathways can make it difficult to position cable bend radius control fittings in the desired position above vertical cable managers and cabinet openings. Loose hardware and ground jumpers add to the project expense and decrease the overall aesthetics of the installation. The small grid openings found on traditional wire basket pathways often requires cutting to increase the cable exit capacity. Low cost cable exits provide bend radius control in the vertical direction, but do not protect cables routed past cut sidewalls or cross wires on the bottom of the pathway. Even more concerning is the fact that traditional basket profiles require cutting at every intersection, which leaves sharp pathway wires in the exact location where cables are routed. Excess cutting is an unnecessary hazard for your cabling infrastructure and installers, and can significantly increase installation time and costs.
There is value in working with manufacturers that can help simplify product specification, reduce installation time, and provide better cable management over the lifetime of the installation. Pathway solutions are an extension of the cable management required within the racks and infrastructure components, and as such, they need to seamlessly integrate with other solutions. New cable routing options are available to eliminate many of the pain points associated with common pathway products and compliment any TR design. Innovative cable exits and intersections can be installed anywhere needed without cutting and multiple mounting configurations facilitate fast installation above racks and cabinets.
If you’re interested in learning more about overhead cable pathways for the telecommunications room, visit our website!