Fibre optic connections:

Always check before you clean...

Although the manufacturer will conduct a test using an interferometer, it is still necessary to perform a visual inspection on site using a microscope or another suitable tool. Here, the surfaces of the fibre ends are checked for scratches, cavities, adhesive residue and dirt. In order to achieve the defined optical properties of the connector, all four zones of the end surface of the fibre must be completely free of dirt. Otherwise, the following criteria apply:

Fibre Cleaning Accessories
  • Zone A: No scratches or pits permitted. 25μm is three times the core diameter. Therefore, the zone must be checked especially carefully.

 

  • Zone B to C: Small scratches and cavities may be permitted. Here, too, absolutely no dirt must be present.

 

  • Zone D: Although this is already the ferrule region, this zone must still be checked as it is also part of the transmission area due to the contact stress on the connector. The interferometry test also registers a diameter of 250μm.

Fibre Cleaning Accessories

Disposal bins should be used to store fibre ends after cleaving and general cable preparation, with sealable lid.

Fibre Optic Disposal Bin

Isopropyl alcohol is used on lint free wipes to remove grease and dirt from optical fibres during splicing and termination. It is recommended that the fluid is decanted into fluid dispensers before use, we recommend our part number DB-IPA. 

Fibre Cleaning Zones
Isopropyl alcohol

Alcohol dispensing bottle has a pump action feature. By pressing a wipe into the top alcohol will be brought up into the wipe, allowing easy, one touch access.

Fibre Cleaning Dispensing Bottle

Low lint tissues are primarily used to clean bare fibre as part of the termination and splicing process.

Lint Wipes
 Fastfibre Cleaner - SC

800+ Cleans

 Fastfibre Cleaner - LC

800+ Cleans

The core cleaner cleaning tools are designed to clean a wide variety of connector types (e.g. SC, ST, FC, LC, MU, E2000, MPO/MTP, MTRJ, Duplex LC, ODC, LEMO 3K.93C series connectors, etc) either directly, when mounted in an adapter or a receptacle, all with a simple single-action cleaning system (push/release). This handy tool is effective with a variety of contaminants and with over 800+ cleaning cycles per unit it also has a remarkably low cost per clean.

Scratches through Zone A

Cleaning Zone A Scratches

Possible causes:

  • ​Manufacturing defect

  • A dirt particle on the cleaning device has scratched the ferrules

  • Replace the connector (IEC 61300-3-35) or regrind it if possible

Scratches through Zone B

Zone B Scratches

Possible causes:

  • Manufacturing defect

  • A dirt particle on the cleaning device has scratched the ferrules

  • As the scratches are clearly < 3μm, the connector can be used (IEC 61300-3-35)

  • If the problem reoccurs, use a new cleaning cloth

Alcohol

Fibre Cleaning Alcohol

Possible Causes

  • Connector was cleaned but too much alcohol was used or the connector was not wiped on a dry cloth

  • It is also possible that there is alcohol in the adapter (or microscope!) or on the opposing connector

  • Clean the endface of the connector

  • If necessary, clean the adapter/microscope

Grease

Fibre Cleaning Grease

Possible Causes

  • Connector endface has come into contact with skin

  • Dirty dust caps

  • Dirty microscope

  • Clean the connector endface AND the ferrule mantle

  • If the connector is not plugged in immediately, use new dust caps

  • Clean the microscope if necessary

Oil
Fibre Cleaning Oil

Possible Causes

  • Unsuitable cleaning agent

  • Dirty dust caps

  • Dirty microscope

  • Clean the connector endface AND the ferrule mantle

  • If the connector is not plugged in immediately, use new dust caps

  • Clean the microscope if necessary

Dirt Particles
Fibre Cleaning Dirt Particles

Possible Causes

  • Connector has no dust cap

  • Dirty dust caps

  • Dirty microscope

  • Clean the connector endface AND the ferrule mantle

  • If the connector is not plugged in immediately, use new dust caps

Water
Fibre Cleaning Water

Possible Causes

  • Unsuitable cleaning agent

  • Dirty dust caps

  • Dirty microscope

  • Clean the connector endface AND the ferrule cladding

  • If the connector is not plugged in immediately, use new dust caps

Water (after plugging in once)
Fibre Cleaning After Water

Possible Causes

  • Dirty connector plugged in

  • Dirty adapter

  • Dirty mating connector

  • Clean the connector endface and ferrule mantle on both connectors and the adapter

PASS

Fibre Cleaning Pass
Fibre Cleaning Pass Thumbs Up
Surface Geometry

Surface Geometry

The surface quality of the fibre end plays a crucial role in determining the transmission properties and service life of a connector. Dirt can and will permanently damage the surface and often causes changes in the connector geometry. If one considers that connectors in the region of 250μm are elastically deformed by the contact stress, it is clear that a dirt particle will generate enormous forces at specific points and is capable of permanently damaging the optical fibre and/or the bonding gap.

Did you know!

We hire Test Equipment & Fusion Splicers

Fluke Hire FI-7000 FiberInspector Pro

FI-7000 FiberInspector™ Pro

The FI-7000 FiberInspector Pro is a fibre optic inspection scope that allows you to inspect and certify fibre optic connector end-faces in 1 second so you can get the job done the first time. This fibre optic inspection scope provides automated PASS/FAIL certification takes the guess work out of fibre inspection.

Fujikura Hire Splicer 70S

Fujikura 70s

The Fujikura 70S single fibre fusion splicer is the latest addition to Fujikura’s range of fusion splicers. The 70S has been           designed to be more ergonomic, faster and have greater durability than the Fujikura 60S, reducing the time it takes to splice fibre cables to just seven seconds!

To view our range of Test Equipment