Category Archives: Fiber Optics

I am Battling Ladybugs This Year

We have had a warm winter in Minnesota so far this year. As with every transition from fall to winter, bugs seek warmth by taking up residence in our fiber-optic enclosures. Here is my latest example, a ladybug on a returned circuit board. Continue reading

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Passive Optical Network Fiber Length

I recently was asked to explain how a Fiber-To-The-Premises (FTTP) system measures the length of fiber between the central office and each residence in the network (Figure 1). This is an interesting question and I thought it would be worthwhile to the describe the measurement process here. Continue reading

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Return Loss of a Glass-Air Interface

I received an email today about a deployment issue that involved the reflection of light from unterminated connectors. When light travels down a fiber and encounters a change in the index of refraction, part of the energy will reflect back toward the transmitter because of a phenomenon called Fresnel reflection, which I define below (source). Continue reading

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Submarine Fiber-Optic Cable Trivia

I am at the Optical Fiber Conference in Los Angeles this week and learning a lot. This morning I attended a great talk submarine fiber optic cables given by Neal Bergano, CTO of TE Connectivity Subcom. I thought I would put my notes on blog for others to view. I was not able to find a copy of Neal's presentation, so I will replicate my notes on his presentation here. Where possible, I will include supporting information that I located on the web. Any errors introduced are mine. Continue reading

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High-Speed Broadband, Fiber-To-The-Home, and President Obama

I have been working for the past 15 years on making Fiber-To-The-Home (FTTH) real in the United States. Yesterday, President Obama visited one of our customers (Cedar Falls Utilities).  Here is a photo of the event. I have put a … Continue reading

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Best Fiber Optics Tutorial I Have Seen

If you are wondering about how fiber optics works, this is the best tutorial I have seen.  

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Using a Laser To Deliver Multi-Channel, Broadcast Video

Introduction Everyday, I work on delivering fiber-based, video access equipment to service providers. The increased demand for High-Definition Television (HDTV, Figure 1) has increased the need for fiber in the video distribution network. Today, fiber optic cable is often used … Continue reading

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A Little Queueing Math

Introduction Queues arise naturally in many circumstances and networking products are no exception. We use queues for many tasks in our networking products and this post discusses our need to store packets while we wait to be granted access to … Continue reading

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Frogs Love Fiber Optics -- At Least in the Winter

I was doing some installation inspections when we disturbed the following creatures in two different fiber optic enclosures. Winter is coming and everyone wants to find a nice, warm place to wait it out. plains leopard frog tree frog  

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Turning a Nonlinear Solution Into a Linear Solution

Introduction I have been reviewing some software used to calibrate an analog video receiver. While IP video is becoming more common, many homes still receive video service from an analog video feed over an optical network similar to that shown … Continue reading

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