October 20, 2015 - HICKORY, NC
Since CommScope’s manufacturing plant in Claremont, N.C. opened in 1990, it has produced enough cable to travel to the moon and back about 18 times. In its 25-year history, the facility has not just manufactured cable, but it has evolved to manufacture innovative and standard-setting solutions to meet the ever changing needs of the network infrastructure industry.
That evolution contributed significantly toward making CommScope into an industry leading network infrastructure provider, and much of the company’s success can be traced back to the research and innovation in the Claremont facility.
“Since the facility opened 25 years ago, the industry has changed. To evolve as a company, this facility had to evolve as well.
“CommScope is thankful for the Claremont employees that continue to deliver superior technology, solutions and services to our customers and partners.”
When Claremont first opened, it manufactured such items as unshielded twisted pair (copper telephone wiring), television receive-only cables (used for consumer satellite reception) and personal computer cables. As the industry evolved, Claremont’s role has evolved as well. The facility was expanded four times to keep up with increased network infrastructure demands. CommScope’s research and development has stayed ahead of the industry needs by developing structured cabling solutions that would later become industry standards.
Today, Claremont is one of CommScope’s main manufacturing and product development facilities for its broadband and enterprise divisions. Employees produce twisted pair, fiber and coaxial cables for use in data center and enterprise network architectures as well as cable television and wireless networks. This ISO14001 certified 583,000-square foot facility employs more than 600 people and it produces more than 2 billion feet of cable every year—enough to circle the earth 14 times.
“The start-up of the Claremont site in 1990 was perfectly timed to the early days of the structured cabling systems industry,” said Kevin St. Cyr, senior vice president of Enterprise Solutions, CommScope. “That foresight into what the industry will need in the future has led CommScope to become standard setters.”
CommScope is a world leader in enterprise connectivity solutions for data centers and commercial buildings. The Claremont facility manufactures the company’s industry-leading SYSTIMAX® and Uniprise® connectivity solutions—including fiber optics, coaxial and twisted pair cabling and apparatus (connectors/patch panels, etc.)—that continue to drive the evolution of data networks.
St. Cyr added that CommScope developed 10 Claremont-manufactured solutions that were later adopted by the industry as structured cabling standards. For example, CommScope introduced SYSTIMAX® PDS cabling in 1985 and it was later adopted as the Category 3 cabling for uses in telephone lines. Other examples include:
- High-5TM was introduced in 1993 and adopted two years later as the standard for Category 5 cabling for use in computer networks (i.e., Ethernet and video)
- PowerSUM was introduced in 1996 and adopted three years later as the standard for Category 5e cabling for Ethernet networks
- GigaSPEED® became the Category 6 cabling standard in 2002, five years after it was introduced. It was an upgrade to Category 5/5e cabling delivering faster data delivery and less crosstalk and noise for network systems
- DMD and LazrSPEED® 300 became the first standardized OM3 multi-mode fiber in 2002 to be used in communication networks over a maximum of 2,000 feet (i.e., deployed within a building or campus)
- LazrSPEED 550 was introduced in 2003 and became the first standardized OM4 multi-mode fiber in 2009 delivering faster, higher bandwidth for network communications
- TeraSPEED® became the first standardized OS2 single-mode optical fiber in 2006 to be used long distance, higher bandwidth runs by telecommunication companies, cable television providers, colleges and universities.
- GigaSPEED X10D cabling became the Category 6A cabling standard four years after it was introduced in 2004 and is quickly becoming the go-to cable standard for network installers
- InstaPATCH® 360 was adopted one year after it was launched in 2005 as the Method B standard for pre-terminated cables used in data centers
CommScope was also ahead of the industry introducing Intelligent Infrastructure in 2001. It was the industry’s first ever solution that connected all vital networks in office buildings and large venues. Intelligent Infrastructure was adopted as a standard in 2012 by the Telecommunications Industry Association / Electronic Industries Alliance.
“Certainly, the industry has evolved in terms of bandwidth requirements. Along the way, the Claremont site has stayed ahead of the performance curve developing, producing and shipping copper and fiber-optic solutions to customers around the world,” St. Cyr added.
Edwards added that the demand for CommScope solutions continues to be driven by the rapid growth of data traffic and need for bandwidth from the ongoing adoption of smartphones, tablets, machine-to-machine communication and the proliferation of data centers, big data, cloud-based services and streaming media content.
“CommScope enables communication through a constant focus on innovation, agility and integrity,” Edwards said. “We continue to drive innovation in networks and technologies with high-performance, high-quality products and many of those products are manufactured here in Claremont.”