Due to an increased demand for our Submarine Telecom and Oil & Gas products, the team at Optical Fiber Packaging (OFP), has just commissioned a new, custom pressure test chamber. The device allows us to pressure test even our larger, most complex, hermetic solutions with Helium up to a 300-bar pressure differential in one run and to further extend the broad range of volume Factory Acceptance Tests (FAT) which we can provide.
The chamber allows us to test products, such as our fiber optic or electrical glass sealed penetrators, as single units, or in batches. It also has enough space to accommodate larger assemblies, like our ‘hybrid’ (optical and electrical) feedthroughs inclusive of mounting flanges, typically used in submarine repeaters/branching units and oil/gas sensor systems.
Parts can be tested in ambient conditions or inside a thermal cycling chamber.
The chamber can fit parts up to 70mm in diameter and accommodate extra-long fiber and wire pigtails on each side of the test sample.
As required, Helium can be replaced with other test gases, for example Nitrogen.
Test fixtures can be designed to mount the parts exactly as they would be in service, including electron beam or laser welding into housings.
All pressure data is recorded and can be saved in report form or in Excel graphs.
Cyclic pressure testing is also available.
OFP designs and manufactures mid to high volumes of glass sealed penetrators; typically incorporating Stainless, Inconel, or Alloy 52 materials for their shells. These offer excellent high-pressure resistance due to the compression seal created by the mismatch in the thermal expansion coefficients between the materials. This compression force results in fibers or conductors being held very tightly in place while under pressure. Epoxy type seals can only withstand a few thousand PSI of pressure, whereas OFP’s glass-to-metal seals can withstand tens of thousands of PSI at a wider range of temperatures (-55C, +200C).