Jim Hayes

Fiber Optics Columnist and Freelance Writer

HAYES is a VDV writer and trainer and the president of The Fiber Optic Association. Find him at www.JimHayes.com.

Articles by Jim Hayes

May 2003
Two measurements of optical power required Compared to Category 5e or Category 6, fiber optics wire is easy to test. A “flashlight test” can make sure the fiber has continuity and is correctly identified. A fiber optic power meter and test source are used to measure the light loss and the loss is compared to the expected loss to insure the installation was done correctly. READ MORE
April 2003
A good cleaver helps cut out costly mistakes To get good fiber optic splices or terminations, especially when using the pre-polished connectors with internal splices, it is extremely important to cleave the fiber properly. The term “cleave” is somewhat confusing, as is the terminology for the tool that does the job, so let’s define our terms and look at how the process is done properly. READ MORE
April 2003
It’s easier when you speak the language READ MORE
March 2003
It’s obvious that fiber optics is not copper wiring. Advantages of fiber include the capability of going longer distances at higher speeds, plus immunity to electromagnetic radiation. These advantages overcame its cost disadvantage and made it the cabling choice for telecommunication and CATV. READ MORE
February 2003
It’s possible to terminate fiber optic cable in two ways––connectors or splices. Connectors install on fiber ends that mate to other fibers creating a temporary joint, or connect the fiber to the transmitter or receiver of a piece of network gear. Splices are used for permanent joints. READ MORE
January 2003
The beginning of the year is always a good time to reflect on the past and contemplate the future. Except in fiber optics. It is hard to get people to look back, as the last year and a half has been pretty painful for many in fiber. READ MORE
November 2002
Fiber optic cable has typically been categorized as fragile,like glass, which the actual fiber is, of course. But unlike drinking glasses that break when dropped or windows that lose every battle with a kid's baseball, glass optical fiber is incredibly strong and flexible. Remember, the material that provides the strength in fiberglass boats, ladders, etc., is glass fiber. READ MORE
October 2002
Your mother was right--dirt is bad. Cleanliness can be next to impossible on the jobsite, but when it comes to fiber optics, it's mandatory. The problem is simply that fiber itself is small, about the size of a human hair. The light-carrying fiber core is even smaller, 62.5 or 50 microns for multimode or less than 10 microns for single-mode fiber. READ MORE
September 2002
The fiber optic cable you just installed failed testing. What do you do next? How do you find the problem and fix it—fast? Fortunately, fiber optics is easy to install and experienced installers generally find that about 95 percent of all fibers they install will test good. But even the best installers sometimes have problems, and finding the cause can sometimes be easy, sometimes confusing. READ MORE