Intel, building on the idea
from UCLA described in our December
Newsletter has shown a CW laser fabricated in silicon that
appears capable of being used for FO communications. (Nature
article) This is really a breakthrough, as it could allow
lasers to be made on the same high volume production lines as
microprocessors, memory and other more common - and cheap - integrated
circuits. Current devices use optical pumping, so a device that
uses electrical input will take more research, but developing
a method to get CW lasing in silicon is considered a major breakthrough.
FOA presented several proposals
for the third revision of the TIA-568 premises wiring standard
at the recent meeting in Phoenix. Several of the FOA proposals
were accepted at the meeting while others are being considered
as part of the revision. The FOA board, members of which have
over 20 years experience in fiber optics on the average, reviewed
the 568B standard and discussed these issues at length, then
produced a document with our recommendations. You
can read the whole PDF document here.
In addition, Jim Hayes attended
the FO-4 TIA Fiber Optic Committee meetings a week earlier to
see if the FOA can provide assistance to this committee. Many
of the issues of the FO-4 committee are new topics related to
state-of-the-art technologies for FTTH and long haul transmission.
But issues like bandwidth of multimode fiber and OTDR testing
are still being considered, not much different from 20 years
ago. The FOA will continue attending standards meetings to provide
our technical input.
Corning & 3Com Team Up
For Fiber To The Desk
Corning Cable Systems and 3Com
are working together to promote fiber to the desk (FTTD). With
Corning Cable Systems LANscape® Optical Connectivity Solutions
and 3Com's newly released IntelliJack Switch NJ240FX, end-users
have access to an economical FTTD solution with long-term reliability
and future-proof connectivity.
3Com's IntelliJack Switch,
a wall-mounted switch with an optical fiber uplink and four copper
ports, leverages existing copper connections in desktop devices. By connecting an optical cable to the
back of the IntelliJack Switch, end-users can turn a single Ethernet
connection into four fully manageable ports, expanding the number
of network connections at an end-user location. By using the
3Com® device with optical components from Corning Cable Systems,
customers have a low-cost, simple method for deploying FTTD.
According to IDC analyst Sterling
Perrin quoted in fibers.org, Asia now represents a market for
fiber optic products much larger than the North American market.
Not surprising, since the NA market has been built up, overbuilt
even, over the last 20 years. Now the focus swings to Asia where
communications is being used as a way to expand industrialization
and globalization. According to IDC, even Europe is a bigger
market than the US.
Better Multimode Fiber Is
A New Industry Focus
Multimode optical fiber is definitely
making a comeback, primarily for high speed LANs using laser-optimized
fibers. In Europe, some telecom companies are even looking at
MM fiber for the last link in FTTH. For those using, MM fiber,
we have some good news.
Yangtze Optical Fibre and Cable Company, Ltd. ( http://www.yofcsh.com)
of Shanghai, has succeeded in lowering the attenuation performance
of its multimode fiber. The new maximum attenuation specification
of 62.5 multimode fiber is reduced to 2.65 dB/km at 850 nm and
.60 dB/km at 300 nm. For 50-micron multimode fiber, the new attenuation
specification is 2.25 dB/km at 850 nm and .60 dB/km at 1300 nm.
YOFC uses the Plasma Chemical Vapor Deposition (PCVD) manufacturing
process originally developed by Philips of the Netherlands. The
PCVD process is widely recognized in the industry as the most
effective process for making complex index profile optical fibers
such as multimode and low water peak single mode fiber. Multimode
fiber manufactured with the PCVD offers superior optical properties
and uniformity compared to other manufacturing processes.
Network designers and installers will appreciate YOFC's low attenuation
multimode fibers as they result in greater loss margins. This
is particularly important in 1 and 10 GbE networks where the
fiber attenuation, not bandwidth, can limit design flexibility
and system performance.
The Third Edition of Fiber
Optic Technicians Manual Is Coming
We've finsihed the third edition
of the Fiber Optic Technicians Manual, and sent it off to the
publisher. It's due out next summer. Updates include new material
on fiber choices (e.g. laser-optimized fibers), termination processes,
testing, high speed networks, etc. to bring it up to date as
of the end of 2004.
summer we proposed
that the fiber optic industry again look at the idea of a "standard connector" - not
a connector for every application, which is not realistic, but
a small duplex connector for patch panel to equipment connnections.
We have publicized the idea and gotten lots of interest. Mostly,
we started a very valuable dialogue in the industry, focusing
on the issue of too many connectors and the confusion it creates
among end users.
But many responses we have received
indicate that a new "de facto" standard already exists
- the duplex LC. Practically all transceivers for gigabit and
10 gigabit networks already are in the LC format. Furthermore,
the MT-RJ has termination and technical problems (like singlemode
performance) plus is very hard to test, so it is fading. None
of the other SFF connectors seem to have made any real impact
on the US market either.
We are ready to
declare the LC the new de facto connector standard!
301-2004, Installing And Testing Fiber Optic Cables, produced by The FOA in cooperation
with NECA (The National Electrical Contractors Association),
has been approved and published. This second revision of the
document now is an ANSI-approved "American National Standard"
of the NEIS (National Electrical Installation Standards"
expands the original standard to cover much more detail, describing
the installation and testing of fiber optic cable plants.
Users now have a reference document
for defining the installation and testing of fiber optic cable
plants in a "neat and workmanlike manner." Contract
documents can be written simply to say:
"Fiber optic cables shall
be installed in accordance with NECA 301-2004, Installing
And Testing Fiber Optic Cables"
Copies of NECA 301-2004 can
be obtained from NECA by calling the NECA Order Desk at 1-301-215-4504,
fax to 1-301-215-4500, email firstname.lastname@example.org or online
FOA Website Expands To Support
Fiber Optic Educators
Instructors' Home Page And
New Online Train-The-Trainer Program
The FOA has always focused on creating better educational opportunities
in fiber optics - it's our charter: we're a non-profit educational
organization. We've done two things recently to expand that commitment
- both here on the FOA website.
We have over 120 schools and hundreds
of instructors teaching at those organizations, and we'll notify
them about these new web pages, but we invite any instructor interested
in fiber optics to dig in and use these pages too.
Our online TTT program is the
beginning of qualifying for the FOA CFOS/I Instructor Certification.
Soon we'll have the program set up for instructors to register
to begin qualifying for the certification.
What splice is less expensive
if you are making a large number of splices?
The FOA CFOT and CFOS programs continue to gain momentum in fiber
optics. Almost 14,000 CFOTs have been certified by over 120 schools
as the FOA completes its 9th year. Since our founding in July,
1995, we have dedicated ourselves to promoting fiber optics and
professionalism in fiber optics personnel, focusing on education
and certification. We are continuing to add new schools and more
CFOTs as users of fiber optics learn that a CFOT is the indication
of a professional, well-trained fiber optic technician. Now with
FTTH (fiber to the home) finally taking off, demand for CFOTs
is rising and schools are responding by expanding programs rapidly.
The FOA now has approved programs
at 114 organizations, welcoming new additions like Corning Cable
Systems for their installation training programs and NASA's Goldstone
Tracking Station. The complete list of FOA-Approved schools is
New PowerPoint Presentation
Introduces Fiber Optics
The FOA has created a short
PowerPoint presentation that introduces you to fiber optics and
talks about job opportunities in the field. It was intended for
instructors to introdcue studnets to the field, but it's a good
introduction for anyone. It's about 3 meg file so it takes a
while to download and you need PowerPoint to view it. See http://www.thefoa.org/ppt/
Don't miss Eric Pearson's Newsletters
- with some tests on connectors.
New sections of "Lennie Lightwave's
Guide To Fiber Optics" covers loss
testing of fiber optic cables and OTDRs.
Your Name, CFOT - It pays to
The FOA encourages CFOTs to use
the logo on their business cards, letterhead, truck or van, etc.
and provides logo
files on this site for that purpose. But we are also asked
about how to use the CFOT or CFOS certifications. Easy, you can
refer to yourself as "Your Name, CFOT" or "Your
Name, CFOS/T" for example.
Feel free to use the logo and
designations to promote your achievements and professionalism!
Remember To Renew Your Certification
Remember to renew your FOA certification.
All current CFOTs have a ID Card with their certification data
and we keep a database of current CFOTs to answer inquiries regarding
your qualifications if needed. If you forgot to renew, use the
form or the FOA
online store to renew NOW!
Want To Get FOA Email?
We have been asked if we could send the FOA newsletter by email
or post it on the website. We are looking into that and will definitely
get one started soon. When you renew your certification, you will
be asked if you are interested in email newsletters and if so,
you will be asked to give your email address for us to use in
a mailing list. If you want to get started now, send an email
to email@example.com with the
subject "eMail List" Note that The FOA never releases its mailing lists for any
use! Your data is always safe with us.
The FOA is managed under contract by:
VDV Works LLC
1119 S Mission Road, # 355
Fallbrook, CA 92028
FOA Board of Advisors
Elias Awad, Clerk, Director of Education
F. Douglas Elliot, Past President
William H. Graham
Jim Hayes, President, Treasurer
John Highhouse, Past President
Danny S. Lyall
Eric Y. Loytty
Paul Rosenberg, Past President
Richard James Smith
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