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1. WO1996034428 - COAXIAL CABLE TAP

Note: Text based on automatic Optical Character Recognition processes. Please use the PDF version for legal matters

[ EN ]

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What is claimed is:

1. A method of forming a tap into an intermediate point on a continuous coaxial cable comprising an inner conductor, a dielectric surrounding the inner conductor, and an outer conductor surrounding the dielectric, the method comprising the steps of:
a. forming an opening in the outer conductor of the coaxial cable;
b. forming a cavity in the dielectric under the opening; and
c. mounting a tap insert to the coaxial cable, the tap insert comprising a signal chip, so that the signal chip is located in the cavity adjacent to the inner conductor of the coaxial cable, and can (i) extract signals from the inner conductor, or (ii) insert signals into the inner conductor, or (iii) do both (i) and (ii).

2. The method as claimed in claim 1, wherein steps (a) and (b) comprise:
i. fixing a tap housing around the coaxial cable, the housing, when so fixed, comprising:
ia. a first end portion,
ib. a second end portion,
ic. an intermediate portion having a recess, and
id. an alignment element having a known spatial relationship with the
recess;
ii. locating a cutting tool by means of the alignment element; and
iii. operating the cutting tool through the recess in the tap housing.

3. The method as claimed in claim 2 wherein step (c) comprises attaching the tap insert to the intermediate portion of the cable tap housing.

4. The method as claimed in any one of claims 1 to 3 wherein the opening formed in the outer conductor and the cavity formed in the dielectric are elongate and longitudinal.

5. The method as claimed in any one of claims 1 to 4 wherein the tap insert is mounted so that the signal chip does not touch the center conductor of the coaxial cable.

6. The method as claimed in any one of claims 1 to 5 wherein the distance between the signal chip and the center conductor is adjusted to select a desired signal strength of an extracted signal.

7. A coaxial cable tap housing, suitable for use in the method of any one of claims 1 to 6, the tap housing comprising:
a. a first end portion,
b. a second end portion;
c. an intermediate portion having a recess;
d. means for fixing the housing around an intermediate point on a continuous coaxial cable;
e. means for environmentally and electromagnetically sealing the tap housing to the coaxial cable.
f. an alignment element having a known spatial relationship with the recess;
and
g. means for mounting a tap insert to the recess of the tap housing.

8. The tap housing according to claim 7 wherein the housing comprises hinged body halves.

9. The tap housing according to claim 7 or 8 wherein the means for environmentally sealing the tap housing to the coaxial cable comprises a mastic, an adhesive, or a gel.

10. A tap insert, suitable for use in the method of any one of claims 1 to 6, the tap insert comprising:
a. a tap faceplate comprising
i. an inner face,
ii an outer face,
iii. means for mounting the tap faceplate to a cable tap housing, and iv. means for environmentally and electromagnetically sealing the tap
faceplate to the cable tap housing;
b. a signal chip mounted on the inner face of the tap faceplate; and
c. means for providing RF input and/or output, said means mounted on the outer face of the tap faceplate.

11. The tap insert according to claim 10 wherein the signal chip comprises a multi-turn antenna coil having a major portion located within the opening in the cable.

12. The tap insert according to claim 11 wherein the multi-turn antenna coil comprises a straight section adjacent the center conductor of the coaxial cable to provide capacitive coupling between the center conductor and the signal chip.

13. The tap insert according to claim 11 or 12 wherein the multi-turn antenna coil is comprised of a straight section adjacent the center conductor of the cable, 1/4 circle regions bounding the straight region, and a semi-circular region connecting the 1/4 circle regions as illustrated in Figure 7.

14. The tap insert according to any one of claims 10 to 13 wherein the signal chip comprises a resistor to permit the acceptance of the transmitted signal and rejection of the reflected signals.

15. The tap insert according to any one of claims 10 to 14 wherein, once installed, the signal chip does not touch the center conductor.

16. The tap insert according to any one of claims 10 to 15 wherein, once installed, the distance between the signal chip and the center conductor is adjustable.

17. A kit of parts for forming a tap into a coaxial cable, the kit comprising:
a. a coaxial cable tap housing capable of attaching around an intermediate point in a continuous coaxial cable; and a tap insert comprising a signal chip, the tap insert capable of attaching to the tap housing after an opening has been made in the outer conductor, and a cavity has been made in the dielectric, of the coaxial cable.