In 2015, the U.K. Ministry of Defense announced it has selected the Sticklers™ products as their preferred optical fiber maintenance tools. The U.K. Defense Support Group concluded the Sticklers products were the best all-round, commercially-available, off-the-shelf fibre cleaning products in the industry today and recommended their use by the Royal Air Force for the inservice support of the fibre optic installations on U.K. fighter aircraft.
This has been a long-term project. The Sticklers cleaners were first introduced to a major U.K. defense contractor, BAE Systems, in 2011. BAE used them on the fibre optic connectors on Royal Air Force Typhoon fighter jets. Based on this success a major U.K. fibre distributor, Fibreknight, submitted the Sticklers products as part of two customized fibre cleaning kits engineered for the U.K. Defense Support Group.
This kicked-off an intense program of collaboration with the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) which lasted three years. As a result of this program many of the Sticklers products were assigned NATO and US National Stock Numbers. Both Fibreknight and the Sticklers product support team provided the MoD with endless technical details, sample products and test results to meet their intense performance standards.
The formal result of this effort was the assignment in 2015 of NATO and US National Stock Numbers to many of the Sticklers products, and informally the program has produced high-volume sales to the Ministry for use on their advanced networked systems. This work has now been rewarded with a substantial order from the UK MoD for the Sticklers Fiber Optic Cleaning Fluid, the Sticklers Flat Clean Wipes and the Sticklers Benchtop Clean Wipes. These cleaning products will be deployed across MoD installations to support all of their aircraft and helicopters that utilize fibre optic technologies. There is optimism that other departments within the MoD, such as the ground forces, naval forces and support organizations will find the Sticklers products optimal for their fibre cleaning requirements as well.
“We’re very proud of this development with the MoD,” notes John Cotterill, managing Director of Fibreknight, “and very proud to have the likes of Virgin Atlantic Airways, British Airways, London Underground and a number of fibre optic component manufacturers who now are all using Sticklers cleaners in the U.K.”