Copper Connectors in the 21st Century
13th September 2017 Data Communication Division
How did copper connectors evolve over time to accommodate the 21st century technology?
Bringing the old into the new
Copper network systems have been the standard for structured cabling and infrastructure solutions to date. Although technologies have continued to advance, copper systems are a reliable and powerful way to interconnect a network in different residential, commercial, and industrial environments.
With the shift in technology and manufacturers developing new proprietary technology, contractors and end users can be at a loss for which products satisfy the needs of the work they are doing. Verified performance and reliability are necessary for mission critical networks, while needing a simple installation method.
Electrical Contractors are entering the world of Data Communications
Alongside this shift, more electrical contractors and technicians are broadening their experience by working on data specific networks which has been left to Data Comm technicians in the past. With the integration of IP technologies becoming more commonplace, contractors must have knowledge of the copper connectivity realm.
What trends are causing these shifts in copper connectors?
1. Network Scalability and Versatility
Every environment now is becoming dependent on network connections because of active devices that require network information. Residential modems, commercial POS systems, and industrial control equipment are all part of a connected network.
2. Toolless termination
The introduction of networks and IP technology and becoming common across industries has put electrical contractors out of their typical comfort zone. Copper Unshielded Twisted Pair (UTP) cable and fiber optics are becoming commonly used among projects and specifications with new work and retrofit applications.
Leviton has released the Atlast-X1 UTP and shielded connector system which offers tool-free termination for simplified installations. The innovative wire manager and door-release lever support the industry's fastest toolless termination and re-termination for easy and predictable installations, time savings, and reduced labor costs.
This shift will drive the need to have unified technology across different copper connectors categories as well as future technologies that will become standard. Toolless termination is becoming the new common practice for terminating copper connectors; it reduces cost and training time for electrical and data technicians.
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