Aug 17, 2011

Compatibility Tests for the Different Sizes of Fiber Optic Cables

Network engineers must determine the compatibility of various fiber optic cables before they construct a network. They employ a variety of tests which include Laser Test, LED Test and Modeling Differential Mode test. These tests require comparing the size of cables to be used. The type of test they utilize is determined by the technology available and the type of fibers.
  1. Laser Test

    • Core sizes should be standard in connections that entail multiple fiber optic cables. Network engineers put together 50µm and 60µm fibers in a single link connection in cases where the only option is mixing of core sizes. They then undertake compatibility tests using the Laser Test method. The 50µm and 60µm fibers are fully compatible with laser sources. The laser is able to launch light into the fibers' center, as they have small spot sizes.

    LED Test

    • Network engineers test compatibility of the cables to LED sources with the 50µm and 60µm cables at the wavelengths of 1300nm and 850nm for LED systems. If about 20,000 trials record no coupling losses, this indicates the compatibility of the cables with LED sources. This trial sample anticipates a coupling loss of 4d' as an attribute of different core sizes and numeric aperture between the two tested fibers.

    Modeling Differential Mode

    • Network engineers carry out compatibility tests to ensure uniformity of fiber types. One way manufacturers can test the compatibility of fibers in this context is to focus on modeling differential mode delay differences and inter-symbol-interference differences. They also compare the link length capabilities of the fibers.

    Single Mode Fibers

    • Single mode fibers are cables with narrower core sizes (8-10 microns) compared to multimode fiber optic cables. Basically, single-mode fiber optic cables are not compatible with either 50µm or 60µm cables. Network engineers use the Outside Vapor Deposition (OVD) Process to ensure compatibility of the cables for single-mode fibers. The process has three steps: Laydown, Consolidation and Draw. It ensures successful compatibility tests between single mode fibers of 125 microns and 245 microns diameter for the cladding and coating material respectively.

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