I frequently hear customers complain that although nothing has changed in their fiber optic cable assembly production process, the measured Insertion Loss (IL) and Return Loss (RL) values of their product aren’t as good as they once were. Is something wrong with the measurement equipment? Well, it’s possible but unlikely.
The proper installation of cables and patch cords and the routing of optical fibers in splice trays is crucial to meet the performance expectations of today’s high-speed fiber optic systems.
Most installers and operators focus on optical attenuation and dispersion to handle increasing data rates. However, in single-mode systems, reflectance is just as critical to achieve the desired bit error rate (BER).
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