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Optical Spectrum Analyzers Shed Light on Fiber-Optic Cables

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Axiom Test Equipment header - RF Cafe

September 11, 2023 - Vista, California - Axiom Test Equipment, an electronic test equipment rental and sales company has published a new blog post entitled "Optical Spectrum Analyzers Shed Light on Fiber-Optic Cables" that covers the process of evaluating the performance of fiber-optic cables by picking the proper optical spectrum analyzer for the job. Numerous test equipment provides insights into fiber-optic cable quality, but one of the handiest and most versatile for the task is the optical spectrum analyzer (OSA). For the best results, fiber-optic cables should be measured before installation and tested as part of a regular maintenance schedule.

An OSA measures and displays the distribution of light across a single wavelength or wavelength range. It can be used to explore how environmental effects, such as temperature, impact fiber-optic cable performance within its range, and how physical effects, such as bending or looping of cable, can affect performance. Evaluating the performance of fiber-optic cables requires a unit such as an OSA with the wavelength range to cover the bands and wavelengths used within any applications of interest.

The quality of the unit's performance can be determined by the accuracy and resolution of the wavelength readings, wavelength linearity, the dynamic range, or minimum and maximum power levels which the analyzer can measure.

Optical Spectrum Analyzers Shed Light on Fiber-Optic Cables

Communications networks often depend on pulses of light for high-speed links. Unlike wireless systems sending modulated electromagnetic (EM) signals through the air or conductive metal cables, fiber-optic systems transfer modulated optical signals through miles of glass cables. For the best results, these fiber-optic cables should be measured before installation and tested as part of a regular maintenance schedule. Numerous test equipment provides insights into fiber-optic cable quality, but one of the handiest and most versatile for the task is the optical spectrum analyzer (OSA).

Fiber-optic cables consist of glass or plastic cores surrounded by cladding which reflects light back into the core to help direct optical energy along the path formed by the cable. The cladding is usually surrounded by an outer protective coating. Compared to copper cables for electricity, fiber-optic cables provide much wider bandwidths, immunity to interference, and work over longer distances with less loss. Optical signals are well controlled within specific wavelength regions and cables can transfer light signals one wavelength at a time, in single-mode (SM) or transverse mode form, or working with optical signals at many simultaneous wavelengths, in the form of multimode (MM) fiber-optic cables.

As part of a fiber-optic communications network, optical cables work with repeaters and accessory components, such as amplifiers, switches, and connectors, to transfer light pulses with minimal loss and distortion. An OSA provides the functions and capabilities to measure key fiber-optic-cable characteristics quickly, accurately, and repeatably. An OSA measures and displays the distribution of light across a single wavelength or wavelength range. It can be used to explore how environmental effects, such as temperature, impact fiber-optic cable performance within its range, and how physical effects, such as bending or looping of cable, can affect performance.

Fiber-optic technology supports telecommunications as well as remote sensor monitoring in critical situations such as in hospitals and military applications. Optical cables provide high-speed communications over great distances, using SM or MM cables. MM cables accommodate many simultaneous signals using wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) to boost the amount of information that can be transferred across a single cable. Cables are used (and tested) within different wavelength bands, such as O-band (1260 to 1360 nm), C-band (1530 to 1565 nm), and L-band (1565 to 1625 nm). Shorter wavelengths, such as 350 to 1200 nm, are also used and often the cables must be manufactured to maintain the polarization of the light pulses for these applications.

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Whatever type of testing your project requires, rent or buy quality test equipment from Axiom Test Equipment. For over 15 years Axiom Test Equipment has rented, sold, repaired and accepted trade-in of test equipment to support your test & measurement needs. If you would like help selecting any type of test equipment for your next project, contact Axiom Test Equipment's sales department at sales@axiomtest.com, call 760-806-6600, or browse Axiom Test Equipment's inventory online at www.axiomtest.com.

 


About Axiom Test Equipment

Josh Shilts Axiom Test Equipment July 2020 - RF CafeGet Exactly What You Need. Rent - Buy - Repair - Trade-In

Established in 2005, Axiom Test Equipment strives to continually improve itself and offer the best value for its customers. We offer our customers several practical, efficient and cost effective solutions for their business or projects' test equipment needs. Whether you need to rent & buy test equipment, repair test equipment, sell or trade equipment, we are committed to providing superior customer service and high quality electronic test equipment.

At Axiom Test Equipment we provide several services. We rent electronic test and measurement equipment. We also sell test equipment. If you have a piece of malfunctioning or broken test equipment we also have an in-house repair lab. For anyone seeking a way to offload their surplus or obsolete equipment, we offer a trade-in program or we can buy the equipment from you.

We stock a comprehensive inventory of equipment and can use our extensive network to find you those hard to get items. We believe in getting equipment to you quickly and at a competitive price.

 


Contacts

Fabian Garcia
Marketing Coordinator
Axiom Test Equipment
2610 Commerce Way 
Vista, CA  92081
Phone: (760) 806-6600

Web: www.axiomtest.com

E-Mail: fgarcia@axiomtest.com

 

 

Posted August 4, 2023

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