(Note: The following has been submitted as a
guest post to CommScope Blogs by Jim Davis, regional marketing engineer for
North America and Latin America for Fluke Networks. Opinions
and comments provided in this guest post, as with all posts to CommScope Blogs,
are that of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of CommScope.)
demand for bandwidth is pushing teams to rethink their network infrastructure
as they look to support faster data speeds, lower latency requirements and
future changes that are hard to predict. The good news? Even with different
fiber applications, it’s easier to calculate link loss. One less thing to worry
biggest thing to keep in mind is that different network applications have
different maximum insertion loss requirements. If the loss is too high it will
prevent the signal from properly reaching the far end causing the link to fail.
Designing link performance early in the design stage allows users to make sure
their cable plant will support the applications they plan to run. Loss budgets
are calculated based on the length and type of fiber as well as the number and
performance of connectors and splices. Unfortunately, contractors report that
only 30 percent of their technicians are proficient in doing so. Not surprisingly,
Fluke Networks research concluded that more than a quarter of contractors
reported having fiber test results rejected for testing against incorrectly set
fiber limits in the six months before they were surveyed.
this issue, CommScope developed its SYSTIMAX link loss calculator that accurately predicts end-to-end
link performance and the application support that this performance delivers.
This PC-based tool establishes loss targets for the high-performance links that
define what ultra-low loss systems will deliver far better performance than
standards require. The user simply enters the type of link and then fills in
the link length, number and types of connectors and splices and the calculator
provides the loss limit.
CLICK TO TWEET: Different applications mean different insertion loss requirements for fiber. Now there's testing made easy. Read more in this CommScope blog from Jim Davis, a guest author from Fluke Networks.
value in calculating the loss is the length of the fiber. However, this
seemingly simple step can create a lot of complexity. Every link with a
different length would require calculating a unique set of limits, even if the
links were identical in every other way (type of fiber, number of splices and
connectors). Installers certifying in the field would need to carefully select
the right test limit based on the length of the link being tested. This might
mean a job with a single link configuration could require dozens of separate
limits, increasing job complexity and expense, while greatly increasing the
chance of mistakes.
Networks CertiFiber Pro Optical Loss Test
Set can measure
the length of the fiber when testing, offering a solution to the problem (see
the photo of our team showing this off in the CommScope booth at BICSI earlier
this year). With support from CommScope, the calculator has been integrated
into the CertiFiber Pro. The operator
sets up a test by selecting a fiber type and then entering the numbers and
types of connectors and splices into the tester. Then, each time a test is
made, the tester automatically measures the length and feeds that to the
built-in calculator to generate the exact loss limit for that link. This
eliminates the need for multiple limits based on length. With less data to
enter, this process is even simpler than the PC-based calculator, and further
eliminates the chance of errors when transferring the limits from the PC to the
correct limits are in the tester, CertiFiber Pro makes the testing fast and
easy. CertiFiber Pro prevents the common problem of incorrect reference setting
by leading the customer through the process. From there, the user pushes TEST
to measure the loss of a pair of fibers at two wavelengths, compare them against
the required limits and display a PASS or FAIL – in just three seconds.
installers can be confident in the results generated by CertiFiber Pro, as it
has been evaluated by CommScope engineers and found to demonstrate a high
degree of correlation with their laboratory tests. As a result, CommScope
accepts CertiFiber Pro test results for warranty purposes.
line – while the future of data centers is somewhat uncertain, the ease of link
loss testing doesn’t have to be. It’s a great partnership between CommScope and Fluke
Networks that will serve our customers for years to come.