M2 Optics releases ruggedized optical fiber test platform

MARCH 5, 2010 -- M2 Optics has released a ruggedized version of its FiberLab testing platform -- the Fiber Lab 800HE. This platform targets applications where rough handling and harsh conditions are common, such as field and laboratory testing, manufacturing environments, and military systems.

MARCH 5, 2010 -- M2 Optics has released a ruggedized version of its FiberLab testing platform -- the Fiber Lab 800HE. This platform targets applications where rough handling and harsh conditions are common, such as field and laboratory testing, manufacturing environments, and military systems. The company is also making the platform available for customization with pre-configured flaws in the fiber to support CATV and telecom test equipment training.

Fiber-optics system testing requires the use of long fibers to replicate field installations, says M2 Optics. The common lab practice of simply using a loose spool of connector-terminated fiber, however, can lead to erratic results due to common fiber and connector damage during handling. The Fiber Lab series of testing platforms provide a protective enclosure, which contains the fiber and holds panel-mounted optical connectors, to prevent such damage and to facilitate handling. The enclosure also helps minimize the space required for fiber-based tests while providing a steady platform, the company adds.

“The new 800HE takes the Fiber Lab concept to the next level,” said Kevin Miller, vice president of marketing at M2 Optics. “It provides maximum durability to protect the fragile and valuable fiber inside during the roughest handling. This makes it a perfect solution for military applications, equipment leasing companies, training facilities, and any application where heavy use and potential fiber damage can be expected.”

As with all members of the Fiber Lab series, the 800HE is available in custom configurations. Customers can specify any fiber type and name by manufacturer, any length up to 25 km, and connector type with any angle polish. Enclosure design includes a latchable protective cover, carry handle, and additional storage space for patch cords and other relevant fiber optic accessories.

M2 Optics is also making the 800HE available in special configurations for CATV test and telecom training purposes. Training configurations include fiber with fusion splices, mechanical splices, and/or connectors at customer-specified locations along the fiber. These “defects” in the fiber provide students an opportunity to practice their skills with equipment such as optical time delay reflectometers (OTDRs) using well-defined, repeatable test subjects.

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