Last month, I wrote about measurement uncertainty and metrology, the science of measurements. This month, I get more specific and cover the uncertainty of some basic fiber optic measurements, starting with optical power.
When manufacturers are asked what is the biggest problem with installing of fiber optic components and systems, they invariably say “testing.” Practically everything they do depends on testing. During development, engineering and manufacturing in their labs, they test product performance.
Once a technician has spliced a fiber optic cable, he or she must test the splice to verify it is strong and has low loss. The technician must add the test data to the documentation for future reference and present it to the cable plant owner to verify the installation has been done correctly.
The Fiber to the Home (FTTH) Council Americas has released the results of a survey it commissioned to be conducted by RVA LLC, which shows that fiber deployments in the United States grew 13 percent in 2015.
For several recent columns, I have been writing about splicing optical fibers. Last month, I covered managing fibers inside the splice trays and closures. But there is even more to know about splice closures.
Demand for wiring and cabling is expected to grow in the months and years ahead. Low-voltage applications for light-emitting diode (LED) technology and fiber optic cabling within the power-generation and telecommunications industries will help drive this market.
The continuing deployment of fiber optic cable is newsworthy in industry trade publications and the consumer press. Serious home-internet users want more bandwidth to download, upload and stream online video.
With the increasing use of fiber optic cable in structured wiring, many electricians experienced in low-voltage copper work are extending their skills to include fiber. Working with fiber requires training and the right tools and testers to correctly install and maintain fiber optic cable.
As I have described in the previous few columns, splicing fibers is fairly easy. If the installer cleans and cleaves the fibers properly, the machine does the rest. However, the installer’s job is not over at that point.
Single-mode fiber needs many more splices than multimode. Outside plant (OSP) single-mode fiber links often require splicing shorter lengths of cable or drops off of a backbone cable. These OSP cables are usually fusion-spliced.
In the past year, fiber optics underwent some important developments, some technical and some market-related. For those of you working in fiber optic network design and installation, the changes present opportunities and challenges.
Recent columns have focused on what is happening with dark fiber, that which is being “lit” to become the backbone of the world’s communications systems. Dark fiber connects data centers, cell towers, cities, towns, governments and people.
The dark fiber providers that most people are familiar with are private companies that were started to offer fiber connectivity for a profit. Today, there is a major movement toward building fiber networks as a public-private partnership.
For the last several months, I’ve been writing about uses for the dark fiber around the country and the world. Last month, I covered delivering broadband to communities, so the logical topic for this month is fiber to the home (FTTH) for broadband delivery.
All of those millions of miles of dark fiber are primarily expected to deliver broadband connections. The Internet continues to grow unabated, and bandwidth must be expanded to accommodate that growth.