Vol. 2 - Sept-Oct 2016 Edition

6 Ways to Create MORE SPACE for Network Patching

Many IT managers face physical space constraints with limited room for additional network infrastructure. The large majority of those running out of capacity often consider consolidating servers and upgrading their facilities’ infrastructure. Here are six ways to do more with the space you have.

1. Take Advantage of Space Above Racks

Many network installations have unused space above racks and cabinets that could be used for additional cable management and patching with help from overhead platforms. These platforms can carry the load of cable pathways while supporting fibre or copper patching, power, lighting, and other infrastructure, freeing up more space underneath.

2. Install Taller Racks

While standard 42U racks currently make up 60% of the market, more vendors are offering racks 45U and above, in a response to Data Centre managers consolidating facilities and looking for more efficient ways to use space. These taller racks currently make up 10% of the market, but that number is expected to grow to 20%, according to analyst firm TechNavio.

3. Use High-Density Enclosures and Patch Panels

The latest in fibre enclosures use compact cassettes or adapter plates that can maximise port density and create a scalable platform for enterprise and Data Centre applications. For example, a Brand-Rex HI-DEX 1U Enclosure can hold up to 144 LC fibres and up to 864 fibres using 12-fibre MTP.

High Density Patch Panels are an efficient way to increase copper port density in zone enclosures, racks, and cabinets. While standard patch panels offer 24 ports in one rack unit, high-density panels can double that amount with 48 ports per rack unit.

4. Install Angled Patch Panels

One of the best ways to maximize rack space is through angled patch panels. With angled panels, you can still achieve proper cable bend radius without needing horizontal cable managers typically found above and below traditional flat panels in the rack. Angled panels also offer increased rack density making them an ideal space saving solution.

5. Find Places for Zero-U Patching

Zero-U enclosures or panels are an innovative way to add copper and fibre connectivity in a limited space. Ideally suited for Data Centre server and equipment cabinets, these solutions don’t take up any rack space, as they can mount vertically in the back of the cabinet. The result: easy access to connectivity, improved airflow, reduced patch cable routing complexity, and more space to manage active equipment.

6. Get Design Help

Independent industry consultants and Data Centre specialists can offer guidance with your topology, layout, elevations and pathways. Combining that support with expert advice on product selection will ensure optimum performance and the most efficient use of space.

Need help with product selection?

Contact your local representative or call +44(0)1592 772124 for assistance.

Brand-Rex Proves Its Expertise at National Accreditation Body of Colombia

When Organismo Nacional de Acreditación de Colombia (ONAC) relocated to its new headquarters, it required a network infrastructure solution that could offer the highest levels of performance. Structured cabling from Brand-Rex,

a Leviton Company, was selected due to the quality of its technology, ease of installation and added value of its environmental credentials.

Located in Bogota, the Colombian capital, the National Agency for Accreditation of Colombia (ONAC) is the nation’s coordinator of policy on quality control. It has an ambitious agenda to ensure that the country is recognised for its high standards of quality in products and services and also acts as the monitoring authority for good laboratory practice for the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). One of the strategic objectives of ONAC is to achieve and demonstrate the full and permanent validity of the principles of impartiality, objectivity, confidentiality and transparency, to allow Colombian businesses to grow, create jobs, and compete in world markets.

On the Move

Having decided that its previous headquarters no longer met its needs, ONAC decided to relocate to new premises in the business district of Bogota - within the prestigious Business Citadel Sarmiento Angulo - where it currently occupies the tenth floor of Tower 8. Sited near to El Dorado International Airport, this Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) certified structure recognises best-in-class building strategies and environmental practices.

As well as wishing to maintain the green specification of the building, ONAC recognised that a cutting-edge IT network infrastructure would play a vital role in enabling its 220 employees to carry out their work in the most effective ways possible, as well as allowing internal and external communications to be fast and reliable. In addition to carrying data, the structured cabling solution would have to facilitate the use of voice over Internet protocol (VoIP), lighting control, audiovisual technology and CCTV, while also permitting other IP based building services to be networked as and when necessary.

A Category 6A 10 Gigabit Ethernet system was stipulated as the minimum requirement and ONAC put the project out to tender by inviting a number of installation companies to present their suggestions. One of the companies that took part was Antioquia based DUCON. Its operations manager, Diego Luis Arredondo, states:

‘We specialise in corporate functional furniture solutions that optimise the use of space to improve the functionality of organisations. As a Brand-Rex Approved Partner we also have an enviable track record in installing cutting edge network cabling solutions and suggested the use of its 10GPlus technology for ONAC.’

Features and Benefits

Designed to fully support 10GBASE-T applications, 10GPlus offers IT network managers a solution that will support their needs both today and in the future. A 3P approved cabling system has been rigorously tested under strict conditions and is manufactured in accordance with ISO 14001 and ISO 9001:2008.

Jhon Henry Prieto, sales manager for Latin America at Brand-Rex comments:

‘10GPlus not only meets Category 6A performance standards, but exceeds them, offering a high level of future proofing and performance reliability. This was particularly important for ONAC, as downtime could bring economic and legal consequences due to the sensitivity of the data that is produced as a result of its activities.’

After considering the many options available from the 10GPlus portfolio, DUCON decided that U/FTP, low smoke zero halogen (LSZH) Zone Cable would suit ONAC’s needs. Diego Luis Arredondo explains, ‘U/FTP means that the individual pairs have a foil shield, which offers a high degree of resilience and is suitable for office applications. Zone Cable from Brand-Rex exceeds the Category 6A performance standards in a channel of up to 70 meters in length. It is specified to 500MHz and, as the market’s smallest diameter Category 6A/Class EA

cable, offers superior performance. It also holds full third party certification and can save 30 per cent in weight and 50 per cent in space over conventional Category 6A cables - something which appealed to ONAC’s environmental concerns.’

In fact, the unique and award winning environmental approach that Brand-Rex adopts throughout its entire operation was the perfect complement to the LEED certified building. Jhon Henry Prieto says:

‘Brand-Rex has a long history of environmental awareness and boasts industry leading green credentials. In 2011 we announced that our global organisational and operational activities had achieved Carbon Neutral Status in accordance with PAS 2060 and we were subsequently announced as runner-up to Dell in the Manufacturer of the Year category at the Green IT Awards 2013.

Furthermore, in early 2016 we exceeded our ambitious 20 per cent carbon emission reduction targets one year ahead of schedule. This is equivalent to a CO2 equivalent reduction of 24 per cent 12 months ahead of target.’

Light Years Ahead

To save even more energy, the 10GPlus cabling will support the use of a lighting controls solution from Leviton, the parent company of Brand-Rex. This uses sensors to determine when and where lighting is used within a space. Lights also only come on if the movement of a person is detected and this type of system can then monitor light levels and make use of daylight harvesting, which uses daylight to offset the amount of electric lighting needed to properly light an area using minimum electrical power.

The installation was completed on schedule and time was saved thanks, in no small part, to the design and flexibility of the Brand-Rex products. This was exemplified by the use of the company’stool-free snap-in jacks, which revolutionise termination times.The jacks are not only simple and quick to terminate, with a verylow closure force, but their PCB design excellence offers exceptional electrical performance.

For Diego Luis Arredondo, the project was a team effort and he comments:

‘I was particularly pleased with the high level of technical and logistical support offered by Brand-Rex throughout the duration of the installation - including presales, technical advice and training. We were also able to provide ONAC with a 25 year system warranty, offering valuable peace of mind, and this highlights the commitment Brand-Rex has to the quality of its products.’

Final Word

Mauricio Felipe Franco Velásquez, IT manager at ONAC, is delighted with what was achieved and concludes:

‘We set very strict performance criteria for our new network infrastructure, as we wanted a future proof solution that could guarantee us the highest levels of performance. Not only has using technology from Brand-Rex met our expectations, it exceeded them. Just as importantly, we have also been able to maintain the excellent environmental credentials of Business Citadel Sarmiento Angulo by working with a company that takes sustainability as seriously as we do.’

Industry and Standards Snapshot - Sep/Oct 2016

Category 8

In June, TIA standards for Category 8 were approved. ANSI/TIA-568-C.2-1 specifies Category 8 to support 25 Gb/s and 40 Gb/s,at distances between 5 to 30 meters. In July, IEEE ratified 802.3bq, which defines 25G/40GBASE-T over Cat 8.


TIA subcommittee TR42.12 approved new standards for Wideband Multimode Fibre (WBMMF). TIA-492AAAE also went through a similar comment resolution process that was editorial in nature and was approved for publication by the TR42.12 Subcommittee. Comments resolved were from the ballot 3 which also closed in April.

The official name for WBMMF is not settled, as the IEC-11801 data centre cabling group owns the naming responsibility and currently there are three equal and divided naming preferences: OM4w, OM5w, and OM5.

CPR - Are your cable products ready?

EU Cable Fire Safety - CE Mark

The Construction Products Regulation (CPR), defines the fire performance requirements of construction products that apply to cables that are fixed in a building.  Patch cords and other non-fixed cables are not affected by this new legislation. In simple terms, the CPR regulation defines how a cable is affected when burned and should not be confused with regulations for fire survival cables, where cables must continue to operate within a fire.

Last month, we announced that as of Monday 12th September the part numbers for our cables would be expanded to include the CPR classification. This provides clarity to customers of the compliance category of the cable within the Construction Products Regulation (CPR) that were introduced on 1st July.

In addition to part number changes, cable print legends and box labelling will also change.  A new label will be added to cable packaging with a QR Code (matrix barcode) image, which when scanned on a mobile device will link to a web page showing full fire performance classification details.

The introduction of a new part number will not only provide an easy reference, but will also improve visibility of inventory as customers transition stock of older products first. By 1st July 2017 it will become mandatory for all cables sold in the EU to be clearly identified with an independently certified CPR classification.


  • We will start introducing new part numbers on cables from 12th September 2016
  • This will be a transitional process with some parts being changed before others
  • This may mean that an order placed for the current part number will result in you receiving a cable marked with the new (expanded) part number
  • We ask that you update your ordering system to reflect the new part number during September
  • Be aware that you may still receive cables marked with the older part number as we transition - unless you specifically state otherwise
  • By 2017, we would expect that all cables supplied will show the new part numbers

News You Can Use - Sep/Oct 2016


While still early in development, 400G solutions are expected to see deployment by the end of this year. 400G optical components have been introduced over the past year, and hyperscale data centres and service providers will begin deploying 400G connections within and between data centres to meet growing bandwidth demands, according to research group Heavy Reading.

By 2017, half of all server units will ship to cloud data centres, as more cloud offerings become available and barriers to adoption disappear, according to a July 2016 report by research firm Dell’Oro Group.


This year, Leviton Manufacturing celebrates its 110-year anniversary! The company was founded in 1906 by Isidor Leviton, who began his business in New York City making mantle tips for gas lighting, and then soon moved onto electric lamp components. Also, this year Network Solutions celebrates 30 years as a division of Leviton, which Brand-Rex is now a part of.

You can get a full timeline of Leviton’s history on their website.


Check out our ever-growing library of helpful videos, including product animations, termination videos and more.

Visit Youtube.com/Brand-Rex.


1856: 160 years ago, Nikola Tesla was born on July 10 in Smiljan, Lika, part of present-day Croatia. He made numerous scientific discoveries over his lifetime, and is regarded as the father of the radio and modern electrical transmission systems.

Ask the Experts - Sep/Oct 2016

Q: Will the EU CPR regulation apply to me?

A: Yes more than likely. However, CPR does not apply to the Middle East or Asia Pacific etc, only the EU. Depending on your individual country regulations, CPR is likely to apply to all parts of the supply chain from distributors to installers to specifiers. Whether you are designing a new data centre or installing cable in a building or selling products to an installer, CPR will impact on deciding which cable products to use. To be kept up to date with the latest developments register for our webinar on Thursday 29th September at 9:30am UK.