Static is an invisible hazard to fiber-optic networks. Electrostatic charges draw and hold unwanted dust particles onto fiber network connector endfaces just like a magnet. Although this dust contamination is merely microns in size and only visible when magnified with an inspection scope, it can still cause serious performance problems for a network. Dust in a signal’s path may change or obstruct the light’s index of refraction, or the route of the signal, through the fiber. This causes insertion loss that weakens the signal and slows down the network speed. And if the refraction angle is altered enough, the network signal may be lost altogether.
The seas may dry, and the mountains may crumble, but the Zip-Ties vs. Velcro debate is forever. Which team are you on?
Congratulations Ashley Kellison, Network Engineer II and Adjunct Instructor Network Technology at Ozarks Technical Community College for winning 1st place for Installer 1 & copper cable terminations/Firestopping and Bonding & Grounding! Ashley was Women In BICSI’s 6th Annual Cabling Skills Challenge competitor. And thank you to our major sponsor Sumitomo Electric Lightwave, represented by Mary Adams, Applications Engineer, and our Scholarship Program Manager Cyndi Garrison of Five Points Infrastructure Services, a long-time sponsor and supporter of Women In BICSI.
CI&M has again published its round up of the most offputting structured cabling fiascos, as found on job sites and posted in photos to social media via Reddit’s ‘Cablefail’ and ‘Cablegore’ sub-communities. It’s hard to believe some of these are out there.
Can You Learn Fiber Optic Skills Online? If you have your own tools and components and like to learn on your own, you probably can. The Fiber U “Basic Skills Lab” has lessons for learning cable preparation, splicing, termination and testing. Just download the new workbook sections on each topic along with the VHO “virtual hands-on” tutorials, and you are ready to practice with your own equipment.
What’s bend radius? Why does it matter when installing fiber optic cable? It can make the difference between a successful install and a disaster. A very costly disaster at that. The February issue of the FOA newsletter looks at installing fiber optic cable properly and understanding cable bend radius.
The higher the fiber count of the cable, the more vulnerable the connectors and end faces are to contamination. All connectors are inherently dirty because of the moving parts like springs, connectors, and latches, all of which generate wear debris. Therefore, to get absolute reliability and uninterrupted service from any UHCF network it is important that all connectors are cleaned and inspected to meet IEC 61300-3-35 standards prior to installation. This helps avoid potential fiber network problems such as insertion loss (weakened signal), back-reflection (signal is diverted back to its source) or a complete system shut down.
FOSCO Connect recently published its informative 101 Guidelines for Fiber Optic Cable Installation. The technical article shares their top guidelines for fiber-optic cabling cabling installation including: never directly pull on the fiber itself; and never exceed the cable bend radius.
The introduction of 200µm coated fibers in the market is causing a paradigm shift in cabling and splicing technology. These smaller fibers are found in loose fiber cables, and offer many benefits compared to standard 250µm loose fiber cables. The only real disadvantage is that currently most 200µm fiber applications can only be spliced one fiber at a time. If a technician wants to ribbonize these 200µm loose fibers for mass fusion splicing, the simplicity is lost.
The search is on for a worthy candidate to be Women in BICSI’s sponsored competitor in the BICSI Cabling Skills Challenge, which will take place during the BICSI Winter Conference and Exhibition. This is the sixth year that Women in BICSI has sponsored a candidate. The Winner of the Cabling Skills Challenge receives $5,000.