Tag: Cleaning

FOTC panelists answer fiber-related questions

When we caught up with four members of the TIA’s Fiber Optic Technology Consortium after their panel discussion at the BICSI Winter Conference, we asked them questions they didn’t have the opportunity to address on-stage. Among the topics: the installed base of singlemode, multimode’s future, keeping MPOs clean, and high-speed connectivity.

Inspect Before You Connect Poster

Do you Inspect Before You Connect? The VIAVI full-size wall poster will serve as a helpful reminder that Contamination is the #1 Reason to Troubleshoot Optical Networks. Dirty connectors cause 80% of field test failures. Microscopic debris significantly degrades signal performance and can cause permanent damage. Mating dirty connectors can break apart, spread, and migrate particles. And a typical dust particle is 2 to 15 µm and is only visible with a microscope.

Cleaning Expanded Beam Connectors

Expanded beam connectors have a high tolerance for dirt and debris, but EB fiber optic systems are not immune to contamination. They should be cleaned routinely but standard fiber optic cleaning tools simply will not work. The CleanStixx™ EB swab can clean 1.2mm and larger EB connectors. The porous, thermally-sintered, variable-density polymer tip fits over the lens of the EB connector and removes dust, liquids and finger prints delivering a fast, reliable fiber optic network

A sticky situation: Removing static improves fiber network performance

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.

Overcoming the challenges of cleaning high-density fiber connections in giant data centers

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.

Connect the dots

The one constant that holds true to all fiber optic connectors is the importance of the surface quality of the fiber optic connector end-face. Scratches, embedded dust particles and residues in the contact zone of a mated connector pair will disrupt the path through which the light travels, as it crosses out of the transmitting connector’s end-face into the receiving connector’s end-face. The best way to get optimal performance from fiber optic connections is to proactively inspect and clean both ends of a mated connector pair.