What is OTDR?
OTDR, short for Optical Time Domain Reflectometer, is used for testing the integrity of fiber optic cables. The basic functions of OTDR is to verify splice loss, measure length and find faults. In addition, OTDR is commonly used to create a “picture” of fiber optic cable when it is newly installed and compare the original trace and a second trace taken if problems arise later, because analyzing the OTDR trace is always made easier by having documentation from the original trace that was created when the cable was installed. We can get a full report of losses as well as reflective events (connectors and mechanical splices) tied to the distance or the geographical information of an optical fiber link by using OTDR. As a good helper to test fiber optic cables, OTDR is widely used in many cable network testing nowadays. (Figure 1.)
measurement-in-cable-installationsFigure 1. Measurement in cable installations
When do we need an OTDR?
When we are installing an outside plant network such as a long distance network or a long campus LAN with splices between cables, we will need an OTDR to check if the fiber optic cables and splices are good. At this time, OTDR can be used to locate a break or similar problem in a cable run, or to take a a paper copy of the ODTR trace of fiber optic cables before turning an installation over to a customer. It gives us a permanent record of the state of that fiber optic cable at any point in time. This provide where responsibility for the damage lies so that can help installers to analyze issue when fiber optic cables have been damaged or altered after installation. Sometimes, OTDR is be used to test as a condition for system acceptance for some customers’ demands.
However, as impressive as OTDRs are, there are some limitations of OTDR, such as that its limited distance resolution makes it very hard to use in a LAN or building environment, where cables are usually only a few hundred feet long.
Visible light source
Checking Fiber End Faces
PON power meter(Figure 2.)
Multi-Core Fiber Measurement
PON power meter
Figure 2. PON Power Meter
YOKOGAWA AQ1200A MFT-OTDR Handheld Optical Test Tool on sale in Sunmafiber
Sunmafiber is specialized in supplying a full line of fiber optic components and network equipment. For the OTDR, we provide one year warranty for both domestic and foreign brand product. YOKOGAWA, a famous brand of testing and measurement tools, is on sale in Sunmafiber with a very reasonable price. AQ1200 (Figure 3.) is the newest addition to Yokogawa’s OTDR product family offering an even smaller and lighter alternative to the AQ7275 models. The AQ1200A (1310/1550nm) is a standard model with the same wavelengths used for communication services.
Figure 3. YOKOGAWA AQ1200 MFT-OTDR Handheld Optical Fiber Test Tool
Supports SM1310/1550nm with a short 80cm event dead zone
Quick power on for faster operations
Able to display trace and event information at the same time
Full auto mode for novice users and information tips for more experienced users
Bright LCD screen for easy viewing inside buildings and outside
Includes Fault Locator functions for fast measurements
Supports external USB Video fiber inspection probe
Excellent Functionalities and Operabilities:
5.7 inch color LCD for easy viewing
AQ7275 OTDR-like interface
USB port for data storage
Quick and easy data exchange with PC through USB connection
See more in Figure 4.
Figure 4. Features of AQ1200
Sunmafiber supplies OTDR of famous brands, such as JDSU MTS series, EXFO FTB series, YOKOGAWA AQ series and so on. In addition, OEM portable and handheld OTDRs (manufactured by Sunmafiber) are also available. All OTDRs are saled with a very reasonable price and warrenty for one year. Want to know more, please click here!