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Best Practices
Connector Inspection and Cleaning
Lee Kellett, AFL
Why Do We Care?
•Connector contamination and damage is the leading
root cause of fiber optic network failures.
•Network fa...
How Dirty Can It Be?
Let’s Do The Math...
What Happens?
• Dust and dirt can literally block the light
• Dirt and oils can cause light to refract and be lost at the ...
Clean connectors matter!
Dirty connectors = high insertion loss and high reflectance Clean connectors = low insertion loss...
Take a newly cleaned and installed connector...
Now add a test lead – not cleaned
And voila... Cross-contamination
Why Inspect, Clean, Inspect?
• Inspect first to determine need for cleaning
• Dry cleaning is quite effective, but is not ...
What Equipment Do I Need?
• A good inspection scope
• Auto pass/fail analysis is best; Manual/view only is better than not...
Reality Check
WHAT WE HEAR...
• I have not had issues – a quick rub
on my shirt works
• I cleaned – no need to inspect or ...
It’s Not Just Us!
• There are IEC standards that define pass/fail criteria
• Cisco has a 20+ page document detailing clean...
Best Practices - Summary
• Inspect, Clean and Inspect every connector
• Assures optimum performance
• Prevents damage
• Sa...
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Connector Inspection & Cleaning Best Practices

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Connector contamination and damage is the leading root cause of fiber optic network failures. Learn how proper cleaning techniques can help insure proper network performance

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Connector Inspection & Cleaning Best Practices

  1. 1. Best Practices Connector Inspection and Cleaning Lee Kellett, AFL
  2. 2. Why Do We Care? •Connector contamination and damage is the leading root cause of fiber optic network failures. •Network failures cause downtime and truck rolls. •Lower loss budget requirements make cleaning even more important than before. •Inspecting and cleaning before connecting saves troubleshooting costs, downtime and improves performance. Period!
  3. 3. How Dirty Can It Be?
  4. 4. Let’s Do The Math...
  5. 5. What Happens? • Dust and dirt can literally block the light • Dirt and oils can cause light to refract and be lost at the connection • Particles can prevent proper mating of connectors • Dirt can damage connector end face when mating and cause permanent damage – cleaning will no longer help
  6. 6. Clean connectors matter! Dirty connectors = high insertion loss and high reflectance Clean connectors = low insertion loss and low reflectance
  7. 7. Take a newly cleaned and installed connector...
  8. 8. Now add a test lead – not cleaned
  9. 9. And voila... Cross-contamination
  10. 10. Why Inspect, Clean, Inspect? • Inspect first to determine need for cleaning • Dry cleaning is quite effective, but is not perfect – so inspect after clean • Many customers now require proof of inspection to certify installations • Inspecting first verifies pre-connectorized products have been supplied in good condition • Saves time and money in the long run
  11. 11. What Equipment Do I Need? • A good inspection scope • Auto pass/fail analysis is best; Manual/view only is better than nothing • stand alone or connected to your other test equipment • Cleaning supplies • Dry is ok but having a wet solution available is preferred • Make sure they are designed for fiber – tissues don’t work!
  12. 12. Reality Check WHAT WE HEAR... • I have not had issues – a quick rub on my shirt works • I cleaned – no need to inspect or I just unpacked new jumpers • It takes too much time – not worth it REALITY... • YIKES! High speed networks of today are not forgiving • If there are issues – how will you prove it was not you? How do you know cleaning worked? • How much does it cost to replace connectors? Or deploy someone to troubleshoot later?
  13. 13. It’s Not Just Us! • There are IEC standards that define pass/fail criteria • Cisco has a 20+ page document detailing cleaning and inspection procedures for fiber connectors • AT&T has their own pass/fail criteria and a 112 page document on inspecting and cleaning • All of us on this panel, and many more at this conference agree - this is a fundamental requirement for today’s networks.
  14. 14. Best Practices - Summary • Inspect, Clean and Inspect every connector • Assures optimum performance • Prevents damage • Saves time and money in the big picture – less downtime, fewer truck rolls, less damage and replacement • Assures performance needs will be met • Provides a better product to your customers

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