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

March 2015
Last month, we discussed “dark fiber” and how most outside plant installations include more fibers than are needed at the time of installation. Later, those fibers will be used for expanding service capacity or leased out to provide income. It may be years before those spare fibers are used, and, as we all know, communications system speeds increase all the time. READ MORE
February 2015
“Dark fiber” is a term often heard in conversations about fiber optic communications. Perhaps this is because it has a name that sounds evil or nefarious. But dark fiber is just fiber that has been installed and is not currently in use; instead, it is reserved for spares or future use.
January 2015
Another year has passed, and we have nothing revolutionary to report about fiber optic technology—no instant-on connectors, dirt-cheap lasers or simple solutions to installation problems. READ MORE
November 2014
I suspect that the idea of employing anaerobic adhesives for fiber optics came from someone using Krazy Glue or the two-part adhesive made to fix a car’s rearview mirror after it fell off in the hot summer sun. Strange, that experience should have made them more cautious about its reliability, but I guess it didn’t.
October 2014
I am always amused when I hear, “No one uses heat-cured epoxy connectors anymore.” In fact, about 95 percent of all connectors, including every factory-made patchcord, uses heat-cured epoxy for its ease of use, low cost and high reliability. Granted, only the most skilled techs use them in the field, but they know the secrets of working with these connectors.
September 2014
In several recent columns, I discussed the process of fiber optic terminations. I examined each step in detail and shared some of the things I have learned from experience and teaching students. As they say, one learns from one’s mistakes.
August 2014
We left off last month preparing a fiber optic cable for termination. We were at the point where we had slipped the strain-relief boot and crimp sleeve over the cable jacket if we were using a simplex cable and sorted out the tight buffer fiber we were going to terminate out of a distribution cable. 
July 2014
Last month, I addressed how to determine if an adhesive/polish connector was good by inspecting the polished end of the connector with a microscope. If the polished end of the connector ferrule looks smooth and does not have scratches or cracks, it’s highly likely the connector has been properly made and will be low-loss.
June 2014
Since fiber optics is growing in market share for all kinds of applications, 
I am hearing more stories about problems with installations. At The Fiber Optic Association, I handle most of the technical inquiries, so I tend to see the trends develop. READ MORE