Connector Cleaning and Maintenance

One of the first tasks to perform when designing fiber-optic networks is to evaluate the acceptable budget loss in order to create a product that will meet application requirements. To adequately characterize the budget loss, the following key parameters are generally considered:
  • Transmitter: launch power, temperature and aging
  • Fiber connections: connectors and splices
  • Cable: fiber loss and temperature effects
  • Receiver: detector sensitivity
  • Others: safety margin and repairs
When one of these variables fails to meet specifications, the performance of the network can be greatly affected or, worse, the degradation can lead to network failure. Unfortunately, not all the variables can be controlled easily during the deployment of the network or the maintenance stage; however, there exists one component - the connector - that is too often overlooked, sometimes overused but that can be controlled using the proper procedure.