Below-Grade Enclosures

Telephone, CATV, and Internet companies all use fiber optics to transmit data over long distances from a few hundred feet to hundreds of miles! Most of this fiber-optic cabling is located outside buildings, hanging from poles, pulled through conduit, submerged underwater, or even buried underground. Below-grade enclosures help keep those buried fiber-optic cables safe from environmental hazards and employees safe from the dangers of exposed telecommunications equipment.

American Products Nautilus

Below-Grade Enclosures

Today, fiber is the most logical choice for many communications systems and industries. Fiber-to-the-home is now more cost effective than it has ever been. Plus, fiber optics can offer transmission services, like entertainment as well as communications, that no other medium can offer (source).

Although installation requires special equipment, below-grade enclosures are becoming more and more popular for housing these outside plant (OSP) fiber cables. When properly installed, underground cabinets resist moisture and rodent damage to the equipment while staying out of sight and out of mind. Additionally, they offer optimal access protection for employees and neighbors. But that is not all.

Benefits of Underground Cabinets

There are several advantages to burying your fiber-optic equipment below the grade, or underground:

  • Aesthetics are one of the most common reasons businesses and homeowners choose below-grade enclosures. It makes sense. If you do not want an unsightly cabinet right outside your building, burying it is a viable solution.
  • It also protects your fiber investment by keeping it out of out of harm’s way. Compared to above-ground cables, underground fiber-optics are much safer. This is because these fiber cables are not exposed to the many dangers that above-ground cables are exposed to.
  • Over time, it is cheaper to maintain your underground cables. Yes, the cost of installing underground fiber far exceeds the cost of above-ground installation. But once the underground cables have been installed, it is highly unlikely that they will have to be repaired as often, saving you money in the long term.
  • Underground data transmission is associated with greater reliability. This is because disruption as a result of storms or other environmental factors that are associated with above-ground fiber are not as common when lines are laid underground.
SELECTED FOR YOU:  Metal Enclosures


Underground Solutions at American Products

When it comes to below-grade enclosures, American Products has what you need. Our patent-pending Nautilus™  series enclosure is the industry’s first below-grade, single handle latching, fiber distribution hub. It provides durable, sealed, watertight protection for underground telecommunications equipment and includes a mounting frame for easy access lift-assist. This lift-assist feature provides installment and maintenance teams easy access to the enclosure when you need it.

Designed to NEMA 6 Standards

This enclosure is engineered to NEMA 6 protection standards and manufactured from .125 aircraft-grade aluminum. It can withstand harsh environmental conditions without corroding and is ideal for outside plant (OSP) fiber. The Nautilus can provide connectivity for up to 288 fiber counts and houses PON, Feeder/Distribution or any type FTTx technology.

Choose to mount yours below grade in a hand hole or vault; or, choose a pole or pad mount for an above-grade solution in flood-prone areas. We believe it is the most craft-friendly, below-grade cabinet you will find on the market.


At American Products, all of our enclosures meet NEMA standards and are made right here in the United States. If you are looking for below-grade enclosures, our friendly experts can help. Start your search by looking through our catalog of products, or contact us with questions about all our telecommunications enclosure options. No matter what your design requirements are, American Products can help you develop the perfect indoor or outdoor product for your application.

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