What are the characteristics of fiber optic links?

The primary task of a fiber optic link is to minimize the optical loss across the interface of the coupled fibers. This loss is expressed in decibels (dB). Losses occur from inexact end-to-end mating of the fibers, and the surface condition of fiber ends. Secondly, the fiber optic connector is to provide mechanical and environmental protection and stability to the mated junction. And thirdly, the fiber optic connector design should permit rapid and uncomplicated termination of a cable in a field setting.

The key characteristics of the fiber links include optical properties, interchangeability, repeatability, reliability and insertion times. An ideal fiber optic connector has the following features:

• Be of rugged construction;
• Be field repairable;
• Be easily field terminated;
• Be physically small;
• Have good thermal characteristics;
• Utilize a fiber alignment scheme yielding low loss;
• Offer excellent fiber/cable strain relief;
• Be compatible with standard tooling and fiber cables.

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