How to select fiber patch cord
Fiber optic cables form the backbone of the communication industry and other network systems. Fiber patch cables are fiber optic cables with fiber connectors on the end, widely used to interconnect different fiber networks. This guide equips users with the relevant knowledge needed for the right fiber patch cord selection.
Classification of Fiber Patch Cables
Just like the fiber applications, fiber jumpers come in different types. Their classification depends on a number of factors including structural and functional properties.
Fiber Cable Mode
There are two forms in which light can be guided within a fiber patch cable, in single mode or multi-mode. Single mode cables are glass fibers of 9 micron diameter and usually have a yellow jacket. These cables are further classified into two, the OS1 and OS2 subgroups. On the other hand, multi-mode cables are of different diameters which feature different fiber strands. The commonly used types are the OM1 and OM2 fiber glasses with 62.5 micron and 50 micron diameters respectively. Multi-mode fiber cables are coded orange in color.
Fiber Optic Connector Types
Connectors are required to cross connect networks together. Different appliances have differently structured port terminals that give rise to the connector types. Depending on the end terminal, connectors can be classified as LC, FC, PC, MU, SC, ST, UPC, APC, MT-RJ, E2000 and MPO/MTP.
Simplex and Duplex Cable Structures
Both single mode and multi-mode fiber cords can be grouped into either simplex or duplex structures. The difference arises from the number of strands within used for data transmission within the structure. Simplex structured fiber cords are single stranded while duplex cables have two strands bonded together. Two simplex fiber cords have to be used in order to achieve transmission and reception of information. a single duplex structured fiber cable can perform both functionalities therefore requiring the use of only one cord.
Patch Cord Length
Fiber patch cords have different applications which call for different cable lengths. Whether single mode or multi-mode, fiber cords may be used for short runs within buildings or for longer runs. Classification of these cords is therefore indicated in meters or feet.
Fiber Patch Color Coding
Fiber optic technicians have been faced with numerous confusions during their line of duty. Cases of mismatched fiber connections have been reported which end up with non-functional networks. To address the problem, different organizations have come up with color codes for use on cord jackets. Classification is made according to the fiber cord application, like commercial or military use. Although a common consensus has not yet been arrived at, different locations have adopted given fiber cord color coding. Either solid colors or colored tracers are used for the color coding.
Fiber Patch Cord Selection
The nature of appliances must be identified in order to come up with the right fiber patch matrix. Information on the cable type needed for any equipment can be obtained from the accompanying user manuals. In the event where fiber terminals of different equipment are not similar, combined termination connectors can be used to link the equipment.
From the above information, you know the factors that matter for fiber optic patch cord choosing.