Which Aerial Cable is Right for You? | Community Broadband Solutions | Corning

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Entering the broadband space? You have many cable options.

If you’re expanding your operations to bring cost-effective, reliable broadband to your community, you’ll want to be sure you have the right cable for the job. There are several factors to assess when deciding which cable type is right for your application, including speed of connection for new customers, ease of changes and repairs, installer certification requirements, and the ability to expand the network over time.

Which Aerial Cable is Right for You?

Which Aerial Cable is Right for You?

The power industry has traditionally defaulted to the tried-and-true method of deploying all-dielectric, self-supporting cable, also known as ADSS. However, the demands on the fiber infrastructure are changing. To meet growing FTTx opportunities, particularly in rural communities, utilities are deploying networks differently than they have in the past. As you look forward, be sure to consider the full range of aerial cable options available to optimize your OpEx and CapEx spends.

All-Dielectric Self-Support vs. Traditional Outside Plant Cable (Strand and Lash)



  • No metal — no bonding or grounding required
  • Self-supporting — no steel messenger required
  • Utilizes existing pathways on pole runs and transmission towers
  • Can be installed up to 2,000 feet before dead ending


  • Requires installation by technicians certified in the supply space, if that is where itʼs deployed
  • Cost is generally 3x higher or more than standard OSP aerial cable
  • Must be dead ended at every pole that requires a terminal, closure, or slack loop, when used in point-to-multipoint applications
  • Closures, terminals, and snowshoes and drop cables aren't supported along span
  • Field changes or weather events that exceed expected parameters may cause service outages
Lashed OSP


  • As these cables are placed in the communication space, installers are not required to have special certification
  • Available with armor or all-dielectric
  • Drops and cables can be overlashed to existing cables/messenger
  • Messenger protects cable from branches
  • Taut sheath or slack loop access compatible
  • Terminals, standard closures, and snowshoes can be attached to messenger
  • Continuous installation with slack access loops at poles allows mid-span access for terminal addition
  • Available in much higher fiber counts (ribbon cables)


  • New messenger may be needed if overlashing is not possible
  • Bonding and grounding required on messenger and armor cable

We Offer a Range of ADSS and Traditional OSP Cables to Fit Your Needs

When planning for your fiber optic network, don’t go it alone — we are here to help. Our robust partner ecosystem offers a comprehensive set of solutions to get you over those critical hurdles.

Whatever your goals, Corning can help you determine the cable that best suits your network needs. To learn more, visit our Community Broadband center, or contact us and a representative will reach out directly.