802-379-1130 wkachmar@focenter.com

TECHNICAL SERVICES: CONNECTORS

 

CONNECTORS THCConnectors

With over 38 years of optical fiber cable experience THC can provide support in all phases of optical cable design, testing, specification creation and installation.

Having designed, qualified and installed optical cables for many varied applications as well as for massive volume applications, THC is uniquely qualified to provide any level of support to questions about optical cable design, specifications and fitness for a particular use. Also with over 38 years of optical cable manufacturing experience THC is able to provide many insights into the optical cable manufacturing process from specialized equipment designs to material choices to best practices.

Being independent of any cable equipment manufacturer allows THC to provide unbiased recommendations and evaluations of all equipment manufacturers. The same is true in evaluations of cable materials and fiber type choices.

Connector Design

While many types of optical fiber connectors exist, only a few have evolved into the standards that are used in the millions today. The others are typically used for environments that are difficult or have special requirements such as underwater mating or specific military or aerospace type applications. Others are hybrid types such as the SMPTE connector for HD TV camera or extreme environment cables for oil field exploration.

THC has experience in design and qualification of all these types of connectors. While there are many services to support the front end of connectors (polish and profile of the mating surfaces) relatively little is available for the cable to connector interface.

As both the cable and connector designs evolve, this interface is under extreme pressure to accommodate new designs as well as legacy cables and tools. We have many patents in the optical connector area and with experience in both factory installed connectors as well as field installed designs.

Contact us to see how we can we can afford a different perspective in connector design.

Connector Test and Qualification

Many times a connector is purchased based upon meeting a published standard (such as GR326) and is expected to pass specific tests called out in a detail specification (i.e. EIA/TIA 455 FOTP - Fiber Optic Test Procedure) as well as customer compatability tests.

External independent test labs are expensive and use specific procedures to carry out these tests. Knowing how to prepare a sample and pretesting in your own QC facilities can save significant costs before submitting a sample to a customer or independent test lab as well as avoiding a failure that may be preventable.

THC can place our 38+ years of experience at your disposal to allow you to provide a qualified connector design and test result to your customers in a faster time and with less retesting. Additionally, many customers require both a verification and validation test plan prior to approving a connector design for their use. While these may sound similar they are very different and meet different portions of the ISO 9001 requirements.

THC can provide test plan creation and or sheppard your new connector designs through a test plan or independent lab.

We have capabilities to test to standardized physical and optical tests for most connectors as well as the ability to create specialized tests for unique requirements.

Contact us to understand how we can help with getting your designs approved and qualified.

Connector Assembly

When the cable and the connector meet, several things occur,

First the optical waveguide must be stripped and fixed in place within the connector,

Second, the cable strength members must be attached in such a manner that they provide complete strain relief to the optical waveguide,

Third the end face of the connector must be polished to a uniform geometry and optical finish to meet interface standards.

Put this way, it all sounds simple.  In reality the difficulty in mass producing the feat is enormous. Anyone can read a manual and assemble a connector and maybe get light through it, but those who do this for a living realize that the details and performance requirements are such that even a scratch of a micron width will fail a connector and a geometry error of a few microns will also fail a connector realize the amount of knowledge that goes into such a task.

THC has spent a lot of time developing processes and process improvements for this task.   As demand for performance of assembled cable connector assemblies goes up so to does the cost go down!

Let THC help you understand the intricacies of making a better assembled cable for less.

 

Summary

Product design, manufacturing process and equipment design: we have designed many products and processes: handling equipment; fiber production equipment; fiber cable processing lines; curing ovens; facilities; and clean room facilities.

Call to learn how our design capabilities and experience can improve your product design or manufacturing lines.

Optical Cable Expert