Fiber U Self Study

Fiber Optic Testing, Lesson 2: Fiber Optic Test Parameters And Instruments


Objectives: From this self-study lesson you should learn:
  • What instruments are used to perform various fiber optic tests?
  • How do these instruments work and what are their relevant specifications?
  • Why is optical power the most fundamental fiber optic measurement?
  • What are some of the less common fiber optic tests and instruments?

The first lesson introduced you to the basics of fiber optic testing. This lesson introduces the instruments used to make those tests and discusses their functions and specifications. Except for visual testing, optical power is the basis of most measurements. Thus we want to ensure you know how optical power is defined and measured. We'll add more links on optical power including how it is calibrated to primary standards at national organizations like NIST in the USA. Once you understand optical power, learning other tests will be easier.

The course leads you to read online or printed materials (with an emphasis on the online using the FOA Guide), watch FOA YouTube Videos, complete some activities and take the quizzes. Each lesson plan will be self-contained. Lesson plans open in new pages so the course overview page stays open to lead you to the next lesson or you may use the link at the bottom of the page.

Student Assignment

Read the references, watch the videos and take the quizzes (Test Your Knowledge)

FOA YouTube Videos:
Lecture 14: Testing Optical Power (Optical power is the basis of all fiber optic measurements.

Online FOA Reference
FOA Reference Guide to Fiber Optics: 
Fiber Optic Test Instruments  (Start with this explanation of the types of instruments used for fiber optic testing and their application.)
Measuring Optical Power, Units of Measure (dB, dBm) (This article covers measuring optical power and the units of measure used in fiber optics. You may watch the video above which covers a similar topic first if preferred.)

Reference Textbook
FOA Reference Guide to Fiber Optics, Chapter 8
FOA Reference Guide to Outside Plant Fiber Optics, Chapter 8 

Extra Credit Reading
Assignments beyond the basics required for the course will be listed as extra credit:
Calibration of Fiber Optic Power  (Optical power is the basis of most measurements. National standards labs provide the means to calibrate optical power to allow various users with different instruments to compare measurements accurately.)

Test Your Knowledge
Online Quiz

Next Lesson:
#3, Visual inspection, tracing and fault location  


Table of Contents: The FOA Reference Guide To Fiber Optics

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