Fiber optics is providing a growing group of former Colorado coal miners with new careers while allowing them to stay in the town they know and love.
Through a confluence of ingenuity and timing, when Lightworks Fiber & Consulting began winning more and more contracts to deploy fiber-optic cable for local utility company Electric Light Works (later sold to coop United Power), the firm needed more team members to dig the necessary trenches.
Around that time, two of three coal mines shut their doors and miners sought work in a region almost totally dependent on once rich loams of the ore, according to a report by National Public Radio (NPR).
Spouses and Lightworks owners Eric and Teresa Neal almost immediately turned their barn into a classroom and began educating interested miners on splicing, trenching and other components of laying cable. In October, when NPR's story ran, the Neals had trained about 80 coalminers (approximately 800 were laid off).
A fiber optic splicer with one year of experience earns between $20 and $30 per hour, according to a (filled) job posting for Lightworks in Denver. Benefits for the full-time job include full medical, dental and 401K, the ad said.
Deutsche Telekom just signed an infrastructure project with the Gigabit Region Stuttgart, home to 174 municipalities and almost 3 million people, one of many partnerships the German operator has inked in its bid to grow revenue and business.
In this insightful Light Reading radio show, Kurt Raaflaub, Head of Strategic Solutions Marketing, will outline the key service provider challenges, deployment considerations, next-gen Gigabit technologies, and service models to win market share in the rapidly growing MDU market.
The MDU market continues to face fierce competition among service providers due to tech-savvy residents (i.e., millennials), demand from building owners and management companies, plus the favorable economics of bulk contracts. However, no MDUs are the same, so service providers must use multiple technologies and inconsistent deployment models, increasing operational complexity and rollout costs.
The MDU market itself is evolving as residents adopt smart-home technologies, generating rising demand for smart apartments with built-in connected thermostats, keyless entryways and doors, and video doorbells. This evolution presents both new challenges and opportunities. In other words, service providers must consider innovative service-delivery strategies to compete and win.
In this Broadband World News and ADTRAN webinar, Kurt Raaflaub, Head of Strategic Solutions Marketing, will highlight emerging MDU broadband Internet trends and challenges. In addition, Kurt will outline the next-generation service creation and delivery platform, built on open standards, that allows service providers to connect millions of underserved MDUs, enables creation of user-driven services, and reduces operational complexity and costs.
Plus, special guest, Alice Lawson, Broadband and Cable Program Manager for the City of Seattle, will discuss Seattle’s B4B-Build For Broadband initiative that addresses best practices in planning for MDU telecommunication infrastructure.