Guide to Fiber Cable Splicing in Fiber Enclosure
There are two main techniques for fiber splicing: fusion splicing and mechanical splicing. When compared to fusion splicing, mechanical splicing is a simpler process. In this article, we will concentrate on fiber splice enclosures that incorporate fiber splice trays to outline the mechanical splicing steps.
What are Fiber Splice Trays?
A combination of fiber enclosure and splice tray is the fiber splice enclosure. A fiber splice tray is typically a tray or panel with slots or compartments where individual fiber optic cables can be neatly arranged and spliced together. It is deployed in fiber enclosures, where multiple fibers are terminated and spliced together to create a network connection. In this mechanical splicing, electricity is not necessary, but a fiber stripper and a fiber splitter are required for splicing. Thus, fiber splicing enclosure is an easier method and is perfect for short-term connections compared to fusion splicing which needs special instruments like an electric arc.
For example, the fiber splice tray for the FHD® (FS High Density) series rack-mount fiber enclosure can hold and protect up to 24/36 fiber optic splices within FHD® series rack-mount fiber enclosures. It is ideal for splicing OS1, OS2, OM1, OM2, and OM3/OM4 fiber to factory-terminated pigtails and is suitable for applications where fiber cable splicing yields installation time and labor cost benefits. In addition, it can protect fiber optic splices, guarantee proper fiber cable management and bend radius control, and allow for clear labeling and logical organization of the fiber optic splices.
How to Splice Fiber Optic Cables
A Step-by-step Guide to Fiber Cables Splicing
Thanks to technological advancements, fiber cable splicing in fiber splice enclosures can be broken up into a handful of simple steps:
Strip the Fiber Jacket: Before fiber cable splicing, remove the cable jacket and coating. Using a tool like a fiber cable stripper, reduce the coating and exterior until all that is left are bare fiber cores.
Clean the Fibers: Use lint-free wipes and isopropyl alcohol to clean the fiber ends thoroughly. This helps to remove any dust, dirt, or contaminants that could negatively impact the splicing process.
Cleave the Fibers: Employ a quality fiber cleaver to create a smooth, flat, and perpendicular end face. A clean and precise cleave is essential for achieving low splice loss.
Fiber Alignment and Splicing: Align the prepared fiber ends, either manually for fiber cable splicing. Follow the manufacturer's instructions to secure the fibers using the mechanical splice connector, ensuring proper alignment and stability.
Splice Protection: Once the splicing is complete, the splice point is protected with a fiber splice enclosure and fiber optic splice protection sleeve to protect the splice from environmental factors.
Fiber Verification and Testing: Conduct thorough testing and verification of the spliced fibers to ensure signal integrity and optimal performance. Use specialized testing equipment, such as an OTDR (Optical Time Domain Reflectometer) or a power meter, to measure and verify the spliced fibers' performance.
Cable Management: Finally, organize and manage the spliced fibers within a fiber splice tray or fiber enclosure. Ensure proper strain relief and routing to protect the spliced portion from mechanical stress.
Tips for Fiber Cable Splicing
Follow these best practices to achieve successful and reliable fiber cable splicing in fiber splice enclosures:
Proper Fiber Handling: Handle fiber optic cables with care and avoid bending or twisting them beyond their specified bend radius. Protect the fibers from excessive tension or physical stress during splicing and routing.
Precision Cleaving: Use high-quality fiber cleavers to obtain clean and accurate fiber ends. Precise cleaving ensures optimal fusion or mechanical splicing and minimizes signal loss.
Fiber Cleaning: Thoroughly clean the fiber ends and connectors using lint-free wipes and appropriate cleaning solutions. Remove dirt, oils, and contaminants to maintain signal integrity and prevent connection issues.
Alignment and Fusion Techniques: When performing fusion splicing, ensure precise alignment and use the appropriate fusion splicing technique based on the fiber type and network requirements. For mechanical splicing, follow the manufacturer's instructions for secure and reliable connections.
Quality Testing: Validate the quality of splices using power meters, OTDRs, or other testing equipment. Measure signal strength, loss, or reflectance to ensure accurate and efficient data transmission.
Cable Management: Organize and protect spliced fibers using fiber splice trays, fiber enclosures, or protective sleeves. Avoid excessive strain on the cables and maintain proper routing to prevent damage and signal degradation.
Successful fiber cable splicing depends on a combination of skill and the right tools and equipment. FS can provide you with high-quality fiber cable splicing products, such as rack-mount fiber enclosures, wall-mount fiber enclosures, fiber splice trays, fiber cable strippers, and so on, which can not only improve the efficiency of fiber cable splicing operation but also improve the overall performance and reliability of fiber optical networks. If you want to know more about our products, please contact us.