Category: Testing

7 Reasons to Certify

When it comes to testing a cabling installation, there are essentially three choices–verification, qualification and certification. Verification is great for troubleshooting as it will tell you if your cabling is connected correctly and can help you find breaks, connectors and splices. Qualification lets you know if your cable under test will support a specific application, making it great for small moves, adds and changes or determining if an existing cable plant can support an application. But only certification will tell you if the cable plant fully meets industry standards – it’s the only test that measures across predefined ranges and compares the results to TIA, ISO and IEEE specifications to determine if a link is compliant with a specific category or class of cable and able to support the application. Certification is also what most cable manufacturers require for a warranty.

A Series of Articles Dives into OTDR Mastery for Fiber Optic Testing

With higher speeds comes increased sensitivity to more factors in the network, creating problems that earlier and slower networks could tolerate with little or no impact. But while continuous upgrades in technology have resulted in more dynamic and adapting networks today, the fundamental requirements for fiber performance remains mostly unchanged. Establishing and maintaining networks requires accurate testing of the fiber infrastructure to ensure it can handle the system’s performance requirements and keep it operational. There are a wide range of tools that can accomplish these tasks, but there is arguably no other single instrument more important for testing and maintaining fiber networks than the Optical Time Domain Reflectometer (OTDR).

Webinar: Deploying 400G Ethernet: Optics, cable-plant and data

The appeal of 400G Ethernet is clear: Bandwidth demand continues to grow fueled by new AI/ML applications, faster CPUs, serverless compute and high-speed distributed flash storage. Upgrading datac enters from 100G to 400G provides the simplest, lowest power and most cost-effective way to continue to scale network performance. Join Corning for a detailed look at what’s involved in upgrading your physical #datacenter infrastructure to #400G. This webinar will cover how to choose the optics, cable, and fiber-plant options to best suit your applications.

Data center planning

Data centers are the control hubs of businesses and organizations. Complex architectures and operating workflows, as well as a range of different applications, all pose a challenge for the network infrastructure. The quality requirements that are placed on structured, application-neutral cabling are correspondingly high. Individualized planning and a high level of automatic cable management play an important role. Transmission paths and attenuation budgets must be considered right from the start in the design of a modern data center. This is because efficient cabling forms the basis for the trouble-free operation of all the processes and this factor must therefore be taken into account during the data center planning phase.

Cabling Mistakes #9: Rely on Duplex Tester for MPO Cable Certification

Let’s take a look at the #9 Dumb Thing that smart people do when testing network cabling systems—relying on a duplex tester for certifying MPO trunks. Field testing is the only way to ensure that MPO links meet the application performance requirements. Despite the fact that pre-terminated MPO fiber cables are manufactured and tested by vendors to comply with ANSI/TIA and international standards, there are many factors that can potentially impact performance. First of all, MPO connectors are harder to clean than duplex connectors. The 12-fiber MPO interface features an array with a much larger surface area, which unfortunately makes it easier to move contaminants from one fiber to another within the same array during the cleaning process. 40 and 100 Gbps MPO fiber applications also have much lower loss budgets so it’s important to ensure the highest testing accuracy as possible.

Subtleties of bend-insensitive multimode fiber

While the industry has justifiably regarded the development of bend-insensitive OM3 fibers as an advancement, there has been at least one unexpected consequence. We have observed unusual, high multimode OTDR attenuation rates (hereafter “rates”), in both bend-insensitive fibers and bend-insensitive cables.These high rates can result in rejection of properly installed cables due to excessive attenuation rates, misinterpretation of rate values, and improper interpretation of such rates during troubleshooting activities. These high rates can result in misinterpretation of OTDR data from data centers, as data centers have relatively short fiber lengths, in which these increased rates occur.

How best to interpret OTDR traces?

Improper use or interpretation of OTDR test results can result in wasted time, materials and money. Estimates indicated contractors lose as much as $100,000 annually due to improperly reading OTDR test results. OTDRs are often used to create a “picture” of a fiber optic cable when it is first installed so later comparisons can be made to help with troubleshooting network problems. OTDRs send pulses of light into optical fibers at varying pulse widths. Then, they measure the small amounts of reflected light that are sent back from faults in the fibers. The device then determines the size and distance of the faults, and defines them as losses or changes in the cable’s light-carrying capacity.