Fiber Optic Components – Connectors
A fiber optic connector terminates the end of an optical fiber and enables quicker connection and disconnection than splicing. The fibers are mechanically coupled and aligned so that light can pass. There have been many different connectors introduced through the development of fiber optic components in the past several years. Many companies and individuals have been trying to improve the features of certain connectors in order to gain control of the fiber optic industry but only few have been successful. As technology increases, many fiber optic components have become more affordable.
There are many different color codes for connectors and they have changed throughout the years. In the early stages of fiber optic history, orange, black or grey represented multimode connectors and yellow stood for singlemode. These original codes became difficult with the introduction of metallic connectors so colored boots were developed, like FC and ST. Now, beige boots stand for multimode, blue stands for singlemode and APC or angled connectors are represented by green boots.
Some common connectors include SC and LC. The SC has a snap-in feature that is very easy to use but when it was first introduced it was not exactly cost effective so the ST was the connector of choice. Ever since the SC has dropped in price it has become a very popular choice since it can be snapped in place with a simple push-pull motion, which reduces the chance of fiber contact damage during connection. These connectors offer excellent packing density as well. The SC connector is available in a simplex and duplex design. The LC is also available in simplex and duplex configurations and is half the size of the SC and uses a 1.25 mm ferule. The LC is highly favored for singlemode and is easily terminated with any adhesive. They are actively replacing the SC connectors in corporate environments due to their smaller size.
Riley Higgins is the editor of FiberOne Connectivity. FiberOne Connectivity designs and distributes cost-effective fiber optic products and integrated modules that increase the bandwidth and flexibility of today’s communication networks. You can view their products at http://www.fiberoneconnectivity.com Custom assemblies are available upon request.
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