OFS Proposes Defining New Multimode Optical Fiber

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At the most recent TIA 42.11 Subcommittee meeting, Dave Mazzarese of OFS proposed defining a new, next-generation multimode optical fiber. This new fiber would facilitate the use of low-cost, coarse wavelength division multiplexing (CWDM) equipment on multimode fiber. The proposed fiber would not only provide up to four times the information carrying capacity of current OM4 fiber, but also offer the potential for even higher capacity solutions in the future, while maintaining the backward compatability to current 850 nm based systems.

This new fiber would continue to maintain the low system cost advantage that multimode fiber links have over single-mode fiber systems. The wide-band fiber is expected to initially support four wavelengths at speeds up to 28 Gb/s, providing 100+ Gb/s fiber capacity. This capability would significantly reduce the amount of fiber required to carry 400 Gb/s signals, the next-generation Ethernet speed.

Dave notes that defining a new fiber has the support of key players in the industry, including Avago, CommScope, Finisar and Panduit.

The Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to develop voluntary, consensus-based industry standards for a wide variety of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) products, and currently represents nearly 400 companies. Within TIA, the 42.11 Subcommittee helps develop and maintain voluntary standards for optical fiber used in telecommunications cabling infrastructure in premises.

How Optical Fiber is Used in Electrical Power Systems

The electrical power industry faces numerous challenges on a daily basis. Electromagnetic interference to extremes in temperature; providing safe and reliable electricity to our homes or workplaces, power companies depend on a multitude of systems. In order to help protect their employees from dangerous high voltage while maintaining clear communication, many power companies choose fiber optic cable to connect devices in their monitoring and control systems.
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OFS Medical Sterilization

The use of optical fiber and fiber-optic based sensors in the medical market is constantly growing. Prior to use inside the human body, fibers must be sterilized to ensure they are free of microorganisms and perform well during invasive and noninvasive medical applications such as urology, general surgery, ophthalmology, cardiology, endoscopy, dentistry, and medical sensing.  OFS tested optical fibers with four separate coatings to see the effects of sterilization on attenuation and mechanical strength. Sterilization can generally be defined as any process that destroys all microbial life such as fungi, bacteria, and virus or spore forms. Before our testing, there were only a few studies directly or indirectly related to effects of sterilization on optical and mechanical properties of optical fibers which is why we felt real data knowledge and experience was at the utmost importance in order to best recommend materials for different types of sterilization in addition to which sterilization methods work best.
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Why is the Fiber Twisted?

Optical fiber shape sensing is a form of distributed sensing that uses scattered signals from optical fibers to ascertain local curvature and twist and thus the shape of a given structure. The twist and bend information is recorded by an interrogator which then reconstructs the fiber shape through a series of geometric formulations. Although shape sensing is aimed towards the medical market, it can be utilized in other markets as well: energy, defense, aerospace, structural health monitoring and other smart structures.
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High Power Under Tight Bends

Laser-induced Damage to Large Core Optical Fiber by High Peak Laser Power
Laser-induced Damage to Large Core
Optical Fiber by High Peak Laser Power

Adapted from manuscript by Dr. Xiaoguang Sun and Dr. Jie Li | rewrite by Anthea Croghan

As medical applications are demanding optical fibers to transmit with increasingly higher peak powers and smaller bend diameters, it has become necessary to test and develop fibers that can perform under these strenuous conditions. A study recently completed by Dr. Xiaoguang Sun and Dr. Jie Li of OFS examined laser damage to large core multimode glass optical fibers from high peak laser power, providing important insight into the damage mechanism for a particular failure mode. A two-point bend tester was used on fiber samples prepared with polymer coatings, having different refractive indices. It was found that peak power was one of the main determining factors in performance among the samples. Polymer coatings with lower refractive indices were found to significantly improve fiber resistance to bending while transmitting. Read More…

Sterilization Effects on Key Properties of Optical Fibers

Optical fibers are successfully used in various areas, such as cardiology and so much more!
Optical fibers are successfully
used in various areas, such as
cardiology and so much more!

Optical fibers are successfully used in various areas of medicine, including urology, general surgery, ophthalmology, cardiology, endoscopy, dentistry and medical sensing [1 – 4]. Prior to use inside a human body the fiber must be sterilized to ensure it is free of microorganisms such as fungi, bacteria, and virus or spore forms. Read More…

Bandwidth of Avionics Cables – OM3 vs OM4

FlightLink™ Avionics Cables
FlightLink™ Avionics Cables

OFS FlightLink™ OM3 Cable designed for commercial aircraft, is a perfect example of the application specific solutions that OFS manufactures. All fiber is manufactured at OFS and our broad portfolio of specialty materials for buffers, strength members and jackets allow us to tailor products to meet or exceed the requirements of a given application. Avionics cables whether for commercial or military avionics have stringent requirements across the board, must be fully qualified and offer long lifetime. Read More…

Standards Update: Bend-Insensitive Multimode Fiber

Enterprise Networks
Enterprise Networks

Standardization of bend-insensitive multimode fiber (BIMMF) has been a very active area within the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Since the start of the year, more than a dozen contributions on the topic have been reviewed in the TIA working group TR-42.12 “Optical Fiber and Cable.” Read More