Considerations About Fiber Optic Cable Installation

It’s true that fiber optic cable, based on optical technology to carry information between two points, have become increasingly important in fiber optic systems. This cable is often attached with the same or different connectors on the ends to connect devices, for example, LC LC multimode patch cord (LCs on both ends). When used in premises, fiber optic cables can be used as backbone cabling in a standard structured cabling network, connecting network hardware in the computer room. And when applied in optimized fiber optic networks, they go directly to the work area with only passive connections in the links. They can be installed indoors or outdoors using several different installation processes. One of my recent blogs has talked about safety issues about fiber optic cable installation. Today, this article still focuses on its installation, but from other aspects, including the general guidelines, its pulling tension, bend radius, and so on.

When deployed outside, fiber optic cables may be direct buried, pulled or blown into conduit or innerduct, or installed aerially between poles. When used outside, they can be e installed in raceways, cable trays, placed in hangers, pulled into conduit or innerduct or blown though special ducts with compressed gas. The installation process depends on the nature of the installation and the type of cables being used.

Installation General Guidelines

First point to mention is that fiber optic cable is often custom-designed for the installation and the manufacturer may have specific instructions on its installation. So, it’s highly recommended to follow the cable manufacturer’s suggestions. Often, it’s necessary to check the cable length to make sure the cable being pulled is long enough for the run, so as to prevent having to splice fiber and provide special protection for the splices. Of course, it’s better to try to complete the installation in one pull. Prior to any installation, one should assess the route carefully to determine the methods of installation and obstacles that are likely to be encountered.

Pulling Tension

Fiber optic cable is designed to be pulled with much greater force than copper wire if pulled correctly, but excess stress may harm the fibers, potentially causing eventual failure. Cable manufacturers install special strength members, usually aramid yarn, for pulling. Fiber optic cable should only be pulled by these strength members. Any other method may put stress on the fibers and harm them. During installation, swivel pulling eyes should be used to attach the pulling rope or tape to the cable to prevent cable twisting during the pull.

Besides, cables should not be pulled by the jacket unless it is specifically approved by the cable manufacturers and an approved cable grip is used. Tight buffer cable can be pulled by the jacket in premises applications if a large (~40 cm, 8 in.) spool is used as a pulling mandrel. It’s right to wrap the cable around the spool 5 times and hold gently when pulling.

It’s ill-advised to exceed the maximum pulling tension rating. It’s suggested to consult the cable manufacturer and suppliers of conduit, innerduct, and cable lubricants for guidelines on tension ratings and lubricant use.

On long runs (up to approximately 3 miles or 5 kilometers), one should use proper lubricants and make sure they are compatible with the cable jacket. If possible, an automated puller can be used with tension control and/or a breakaway pulling eye. On very long runs (farther than approximately 2.5 miles or 4 kilometers), one should pull from the middle out to both ends or use an automated fiber puller at intermediate point(s) for a continuous pull.

Bend Radius

When there are no specific recommendations from the cable manufacturer, the cable should not be pulled over a bend radius smaller than twenty (20) times the cable diameter. And after completion of the pull, the cable should not have any bend radius smaller than ten times the cable diameter.

Twisting cable

It’s known that twisting the cable can stress the fibers, thus in no case should one twist the cable. (Tension on the cable and pulling ropes can cause twisting.)

Use a swivel pulling eye to connect the pull rope to the cable to prevent pulling tension causing twisting forces on the cable.

Roll the cable off the spool instead of spinning it off the spool end to prevent putting a twist in the cable for every turn on the spool.

When laying cable out for a long pull, use a “figure 8” on the ground to prevent twisting. The figure 8 puts a half twist in on one side of the 8 and takes it out on the other, preventing twists.

Conclusion

Fiber optic cables have been widely deployed for computer net- works (LANs), closed circuit TV (video), voice links (telephone, intercom, audio), building management, security or fire alarm systems, or any other communications link. With its installation in large scale, it’s of great importance to know some basic points on cable installation discussed in this text. As for the fiber optic cables chosen for project, you can try Fiberstore, whose cables are available in many types, like SC fiber optic cable, LC SC cable, MTP cable. All are test- and quality-assured, suitable for both indoor and outdoor installation.

How to Easily Upgrade Your Network to 40G Ethernet

The increasing need for higher bandwidth and faster data transmission drives the evolution of network Ethernet. 40G Ethernet is gradually becoming commonplace in telecommunication networks, as 10G cannot satisfy the never-stopping longing for higher speed communication any more. Unlike 1G migrating to 10G, 10G migrating to 40G gets across a much larger span in terms of not only transmission data rate but also technologies. Thus, the deployment of 40G is much more complicated than that of 10G. Today, I’d like to introduce several indispensable components to help those who want to easily upgrade their network to 40G Ethernet.

QSFP+ Fiber Optic Transceiver

Fiber optic transceiver is a very basic component in today’s telecommunication network. It is composed of both a transmitter and a receiver that are arranged in parallel so that they can operate with their own circuity that enables each of them to handle transmission in both directions. There are different types of optical transceivers for different Ethernet networks, such as GBIC for 1G, SFP+ for 10G, CFP for 100G. As for 40G data transmission, QSFP+ (quad small form-factor plus) transceiver module is the most commonly used type.

QSFP+ transceiver (shown in picture below) is a compact, hot-pluggable transceiver, which is evolved from QSFP transceiver, used for high-speed data communications applications. It provides four channels of data in one pluggable interface, with each channel capable of transmitting data at 10Gbps and supporting a total of 40Gbps. The 40G QSFP+ transceiver offers customers high-density 40G connectivity option for data center, high-performance computing networks, enterprise core and distribution layers, and service provider transport applications.

High-Density MPO/MTP Cables

Unlike standard fiber patch cables with the maximum data rate of 10Gbps, a patch cord terminated with 12-fiber or 24-fiber MPO/MTP connectors is available for 40G, or even 100G Ethernet. MPO/MTP trunk cable and MPO/MTP harness cable are the two widely applied high-density fiber cables in upgrading network to 40G Ethernet.

MPO/MTP Trunk Cable—MPO/MTP trunk cable, terminated with MPO/MTP connectors at both end, are typically available with 12 to 144 fibers and create a permanent fiber links between panels in a structured environment. With plug and play architecture, MPO/MTP trunk cable greatly reduces the initial installation and ongoing maintenance costs. Generally, 12-fiber and 24-fiber MPO/MTP trunk cables are respectively commonly used types for 40G and 100G applications. Here is a 72-fiber MPO/MTP trunk cable with 6 MPO/MTP connectors at both ends.

MPO/MTP Harness Cable—MPO/MTP harness cable, also named MPO/MTP fan-out cable or MTP/MPO breakout cable, is terminated with a male/female MTP connector on one side and several duplex LC/SC connectors on the other side, providing a transmission from multi-fiber cables to individual fiber or duplex fiber connectors. Compared to normal LC fiber optic cable, these cables are designed for high density applications which require high performance and fast installation. MPO/MPO harness cables are ideal for interconnecting MPO/MTP cassettes, panels or backbone MPO/MTP assemblies with the active equipment, saving costly data center rack space and easing fiber management. The image below shows a 1m MTP-4LC SMM harness cable.

40G QSFP+ Cable Assemblies

40G QSFP+ cable is a cost-effective solution for 40G data center. It is a low-power alternative to optical QSFP+ system. 40G QSFP+ direct attach cable (DAC) and 40G QSFP+ active optical cable (AOC) are two types os 40G QSFP+ cables.

40G QSFP+ DAC—QSFP+ DAC is a copper 40 Gigabit Ethernet cable which comes in either an active or passive twinax cable assembly and connects directly into a QSFP+ housing. An active twinax cable has active electronic components in the QSFP+ housing, while the passive twinax cable is mainly just a straight “wire” and contains few components. Generally, twinax cables shorter than 5 meters are passive and those longer than 5 meters are active.

40G QSFP+ AOC—QSFP+ AOC is a cabling technology that accepts the same electrical inputs as a traditional copper cable, but uses optical fiber between the connectors. QSFP+ AOC uses electrical-to-optical conversion on the cable ends to improve speed and distance performance of the cable without sacrificing compatibility with standard electrical interfaces. The following picture shows a QSFP+ to 4SFP+ AOC and a QSFP+ to QSFP+ DAC.

Conclusion

To upgrade your network to 40G Ethernet, you should prepare components like QSFP+ transceivers, MPO/MTP fiber cables and QSFP+ cables, etc. All of these devices can be purchased in fiber-mart.COM. Just need a click, you can take all these components to home and upgrade to 40G Ethernet easily.

Know More About LC And SC Fiber Patch Cable

Fiber patch cable plays an important role in optical links. It is a fiber optic cable terminated with one fiber optic connector on both ends. Among the various types of fiber patch cables, LC to LC patch cable and SC fiber optic cable are two of the most commonly used fiber patch cables. It is not difficult to understand that the difference between LC and SC fiber patch cable lies in LC connector and SC connector. So, learning about LC connector and SC connector will help you know more about LC and SC fiber patch cable.

Overview of LC Connector And SC Connector

LC connector has a push and latch structure, with plastic shell and accurate 1.25mm ceramic ferrule. It is in small size and has good performance. Standing for Subscriber Connector or Square Connector or Standard Connector, SC connector is a kind of push and pull connector. It has a locking tab which can make accurate alignment through ceramic ferrule. The following figure shows LC connector and SC connector.

Comparison Between LC Connector And SC Connector

This part will make comparison between LC connector and SC connector from three aspects: size, handing and application.

Size: LC connector is half the size of SC connector. The ceramic ferrule of LC connector is 1.25mm, while SC connector’s ceramic ferrule is 2.5mm.

Handing: LC is a push and latch connector while SC is a push and pull connector. You can have better understanding of this from the above figure.

Application: Structured with half the footprint of the SC connector gives LC connector huge popularity in data communication and other high-density patch applications. In addition, the combination of small size and latch feature makes LC connector very popular and widely used for dense installation. While SC connector features low cost, simplicity as well as good durability, and it remains the second most common connector for polarization maintaining applications. The SC connector is ideally suited for data communication and telecommunication applications including point to point and passive optical networking.

Another Fiber Patch Cable

As LC connector and SC connector have their own advantages, both LC patch cable and SC patch cable are widely used in optical network deployment. But, is there a kind of fiber patch cable that combines LC connector and SC connector? The answer is “Yes”. There is a kind of SC to LC patch cable on the market. As the figure below shows, it is a high quality 50/125μm OM4 multimode fiber patch cable. This LC to SC cable is housed in a PVC (OFNR) retardant jacket, with UPC polish. It support 850/1300nm wavelength. It’s a great option for high-speed, high bandwidth transmissions over Gigabit Ethernet/fiber channel networks.

Conclusion

As the demand for higher bandwidth is increasing, fiber patch cable is commonly used in network deployment. Both LC patch cable and SC patch cable are designed to achieve such a kind of transmission, and they have their own advantages. What’s more, LC to SC fiber patch cable is also available to realize the transmission between devices terminated with LC and SC connector.

How to Select the Perfect Fiber Jumper Cables?

Fiber jumper cables are mainly used for connection in the context of optical fiber communications including applications like cable TV (CATV), inside buildings and in fiber to the home (FTTH) installations. Nowadays, optical fiber jumpers are varied in cables and connector types. It is hard to determine the differences between one fiber optic cable jumper and another. This article would put emphasis on guiding you to select the perfect fiber jumper cables from the following six perspectives.

Cable Type of Fiber Jumper Cables

Fiber jumper cables comes in two general types, singlemode and multimode optical fiber jumper. They are different in fiber diameter, classifications of fiber strands, jacket color, transmission speed and etc.

Singlemode fiber jumper cable generally has a 9 micron diameter glass fiber. There are two sub groups (referred to as OS1 and OS2) but most cable is “dual rated” to cover both classifications. Multimode optical fiber jumper can have several different diameters and classifications of fiber strands. The two diameters currently in use are 62.5 Micron and 50 Micron. Within the 50 Micron diameter multimode cable, there are three different grades (referred to as OM2, OM3, and OM4). The cable types used in the patch cord should match that of the network cabling to which they are attached via the patch panel.

Jacket Diameters

The fiber optic cable jumpers may be available in different “jacket diameters” (such as 2mm or 3mm). Thinner diameters (1.6 or 2mm) may be preferable in dense installation within a single rack since they take up less space and are more flexible. Fiber optic cable jumpers that route from rack to rack (especially via cable tray) may be more suitable if they have the thicker jacket that results in larger diameters thus making them more rigid.

Jacket Material

Flammability of the jacket material could become an issue if the area they are in has special requirements for flame spread or products of combustion in case of a fire. In these cases, optical jumpers may have to be classified as “Plenum Rated” (OFNP) rather than “Riser Rated” (OFNR).

Connector Type

See the connector type descriptions below. Some fiber jumper cables may have different connector types on each end to accommodate interconnection of devices with dissimilar connectors. In some cases, there may be a connector on only one end, and bare or unterminated fiber on the other. These are usually referred to as “pigtails” rather than “patch Cords”.

Simplex or Duplex

Unlike copper patch cords which send information in both directions (having multiple pairs of conductors with which to do so), most fiber jumper cables have a single strand of fiber allowing for signal flow in one direction only.

Connecting equipment so that it can send and receive information requires two strands of fiber (one to transmit and one to receive information). This can be accommodated by using two “simplex” (single strand of fiber) cables for each equipment interconnection or a “duplex” cable, with conductors and/or connectors bonded together in pairs.

Length

Overall length of the fiber jumper cables may be specified in feet or meters, depending on your preference.

Conclusion

In this article, we mainly introduce six factors attaching to the fiber jumper cables—cable type, jacket diameters, jacket material, connector type, type of communication service as well as the length. You can select the proper patch cord you need through considering those six attributes. Hope this post is helpful for you to fully understand optical fiber jumper.

What Are the Impacts of Temperature on Optical Transceivers?

The working temperature of optical transceivers affects all the parameters of optical transceivers. If the ambient temperature of the optical transceiver changes, the operating current of the optical transceiver will vary with temperature. At the same time, the parameters of the optical transceivers change, which affects the normal transmission of optical transceivers. Today, we mainly talk about the causes of too high or too low temperature on optical transceivers and its impact.

What Is the Normal Temperature of Optical transceivers?

Because the type and brand of the optical transceiver are complicated, the temperature of modules corresponding to different optical transceiver temperature levels are different and the temperature specifications defined by the supplier are different, whether the temperature of optical transceivers is abnormal or not needs to be considered according to these factors. Before we use the optical transceiver, it is best to check the vendor’s definition of the temperature profile of the optical transceiver so as to reduce the number of problems caused by abnormal optical transceiver temperature.

Three Reasons That Affect the Temperature of Optical Transceivers

1. The Poor Quality and Workmanship

If you use the optical transceivers with poor quality and workmanship, then the phenomenon of abnormal temperature of the optical transceivers is more common. Because the function of such optical transceivers is instable, heat dissipation is also relatively poor. In order to reduce the temperature anomaly and unnecessary discard, we advise to use the optical transceivers with better function, quality and workmanship.

2. The Harsh Application Environment

Optical transceiver operating environment is in the data center, computer room or interchanger. If the optical transceivers are used in other environments, the change of the ambient temperature will inevitably change the temperature of the optical transceiver, thereby affecting its optical power and optical sensitivity. If the application environment of optical transceivers is harsh, then we advise to select the optical transceivers with industrial temperature or extended temperature.

3. The Use of Second-hand Optical Transceivers

The temperature of new optical transceivers is usually at 0-70 ° C and many second-hand optical transceivers are inaccessible. And the second-hand optical transceivers cannot operate normally in high-temperature or low-temperature conditions. Therefore, we advocate the use of new optical transceivers.

What Are the Impacts of High or Low Temperature on Optical transceivers?

If the optical transceiver temperature is too high or too low, it will affect the function of the optical transceiver and make the communication data appear faulty. The optical transceivers will alarm if its temperature isn’t in the normal range. If the optical transceivers are in a bad situation, interchangers will send data continuously. The optical transceivers will not send / receive data from the beginning until it is recovered to normal operation.

1. The Impact of Too High Temperature on Optical Transceivers:

If the operating temperature of optical transceivers is too high, the optical power of optical transceivers will become larger and the receiving signal will be faulty, and even the optical transceiver will be burned. As a result, the optical transceivers cannot work normally. In this case, DDM function should be added. You can select temperature control system for real-time monitoring and compensation to ensure that the optical transceiver extinction ratio and luminous power stable, to ensure the normal operation of the optical communication system.

2. The Impact of Too Low Temperature on Optical Transceivers:

Generally speaking, as long as optical transceivers are not exposed to the harsh environment below 0℃, the temperature will not be too low. It is better not to use the optical transceiver in the condition of too low temperature, as this may cause the function of the optical transceiver to be unstable.

How about the Temperature of fiber-mart.com’s Optical Transceivers?

As one of the most top-rated optical transceiver vendors in China, fiber-mart.com complies with the temperature grade standard that the industry requires, and will meet the customer demand for temperature. In addition, all optical transceivers will undergo a high and low temperature burn-in test prior to shipping to test the temperature to ensure the quality of the products.

what the Differences Between FBT Splitter and PLC Splitter

In FTTx and PON architectures, optical splitter plays an increasingly significant role to create a variety of point-to-multipoint fiber optic networks. But do you know what is a fiber optic splitter? In fact, a fiber optic splitter is a passive optical device that can split or separate an incident light beam into two or more light beams. Basically, there are two types of fiber splitter classified by their working principle: fused biconical taper splitter (FBT splitter) and planar lightwave circuit splitter (PLC splitter). You may have one question: what’s the difference between them and shall we use FBT or PLC splitter?

What Is FBT Splitter?

FBT splitter is based on a traditional technology to weld several fiber together from side of the fiber. Fibers are aligned by heating for a specific location and length. Because the fused fibers are very fragile, they are protected by a glass tube made of epoxy and silica powder. And then a stainless steel tube covers the inner glass tube and is sealed by silicon. As the technology continues developing, the quality of FBT splitter is very good and it can be applied in a cost-effective way.

What Is PLC Splitter?

PLC splitter is based on planar lightwave circuit technology. It composes of three layers: a substrate, a waveguide, and a lid. The waveguide plays a key role in the splittering process which allows for passing specific percentages of light. So the signal can be split equally. In addition, PLC splitters are available in a variety of split ratios, including 1:4, 1:8, 1:16, 1:32, 1:64, etc. They also have several types, such as bare PLC splitter, blockless PLC splitter, fanout PLC splitter, mini plug-in type PLC splitter, etc. Therefore, if high split counts are needed, small package size and low insertion loss are also required, you are suggested to choose PLC splitter rather than FBT splitter. For more information about PLC splitter, please refer to How Much Do You Know About PLC Splitter?

FBT vs. PLC Splitter

(1) Operating Wavelength

FBT splitter can only support three wavelengths: 850nm, 1310nm and 1550nm, which makes its inability to works on other wavelengths. While PLC splitter can support wavelength from 1260 to 1650nm. The adjustable rang of wavelength makes PLC splitter suitable for more applications.

(2) Splitting Ratio

Splitting ratio is decided by the inputs and outputs of an optical cable splitter. The maximum split ratio of FBT splitter is up to 1:32, which means one or two inputs can be splitted into an output maximum of 32 fibers at a time. However, the split ratio of PLC splitter is up to 1:64 – one or two inputs with an output maximum of 64 fibers. Besides, FBT splitter is customisable, and the special types are 1:3, 1:7, 1:11, etc. But PLC splitter is non-customisable, and it has only standard version like 1:2, 1:4, 1:8, 1:16, 1:32 and so on.

(3) Assymetric Attenuation Per Branch

The signal processed by FBT splitters cannot be splitted evenly due to lack of management of the signals, so its transmission distance can be affected. However, PLC splitter can support equal splitter ratios for all branches, so it is more stable.

(4) Failure Rate

FBT splitter is typically used for networks requiring the splitter configuration of less than 4 splits. The larger the split, the larger failure rate. When its splitting ratio is larger than 1:8, more errors will occur and cause higher failure rate. Thus, FBT splitter is more restricted to the number of splits in one coupling. But the failure rate of PLC splitter is much smaller.

(5) Temperature Dependent Loss

In certain areas, temperature can be a crucial factor that affects the insertion loss of optical components. FBT splitter can work stable under the temperature of -5 to 75℃. PLC splitter can work at a wider temperature range of -40 to 85 ℃, providing relatively good performance in the areas of extreme climate.

(6) Price

Owing to the complicated manufacturing technology of PLC splitter, its cost is generally higher than the FBT splitter. If your application is simple and short of funds, FBT splitter is definitely a cost-effective solution.

Conclusion

Although the outer appearance and size of FBT and PLC fiber splitter seem rather similar, their internal technologies and specifications differ in various ways. Over the past few years, splitter technology has made a huge step forward in the past few years by introducing PLC splitter. It has proven itself as a higher reliable type of device compared to the traditional FBT splitter.