Before we start delving on the ins and outs of the complexities of fiber optics, let me give you a short lesson on the wonderful world of fiber optics. This write up will assist you to begin your journey on fiber optic technician training by giving you a short 101 to help you familiarize this diverse topic.
When did it all start?
Fiber optic cables were first utilized more than 3 decades ago in the research and development labs located in Chicago, IL, and USA in the late 70s. By the 80s, fiber networks began connecting states from coast to coast in the US.
Before the 90s came, fiber has been starting to become the cable if choice as compared to copper. Back in the 90s, it was discovered that fiber optics can give better phone and Internet service and that began to change everything.
Computers and LANs began utilizing fiber at about the same time as when telecomm companied began exploring its potential. Industrial businesses were among the pioneers that they mostly benefitted from the noise immunity of fiber optics and the long distances it can cover.
Soon after, fiber optics was everywhere— from communications to entertainment, in the medical field and the military.
The differences between forms of fiber optic installation
The ways fiber optic cable is installed and use fall on different formats. One is called an “outside plant” which we usually see being utilized in telephone networks or CATV. On the other hand, there is also what we call “premises” fiber optics which is most commonly seen in buildings and campuses.
Similar to “wire” – fiber optics does not fall in one category.
Below, we will compare the difference between “outside plant” and “premises”
Outside Plant (OSP)
Telecommunications, cable TV and internet providers, all involve a lot of fiber optics in their operations, majority of which can be seen outside infrastructure. You will see them hanging from poles or underneath the ground, pulled through conduit or under the ocean. They run from a few thousand feet to even a hundred thousand miles.
The difference of outside plant from premises cabling is that fibers can be found inside the buildings. Premises cabling usually involve short distances of a few meters to hundreds of feet. The fibers used are multi-mode, though in some instances, there are some that are hybrid of single and multi-mode.
The certified fiber optic technicians are well trained in both outside plant and premises cabling. Companies that have such team of technicians are usually multinational companies. They have dedicated staff assigned to handle both indoor and outdoor cabling.
Let’s talk about safety
Before we end this article, the most critical thing you need to always remember is how to keep safe in the workplace. Below are some points you must always remember.
- Throw your trash in the right place.
- Do your work on a black pad in order for you to see the slivers of glass easily.
- Never ever drop cables on the floor where they might end up on carpets or under your shoes.