ST SM Plug-type Attenuators
In a fiber optic system, buildout attenuators play an important role in controlling optical power levels in telecommunication applications. As such, they must offer consistent performance over a range of operating conditions so that attenuation levels remain constant and predictable.
Available brands: Huber&Suhner , Tyco Electronics, Optoplast
Typical Uses of Singlemode Fixed Buildout Attenuators
A. Power Equalization (Balancing) at Patch Distribution Panel or Receiver Panel
Patch panels are extensively used in the telephony and test (laboratory) environments to connect fiber optic lines to transmission equipment. Occasionally some lines may need to be attenuated at the distribution or receiver panel to closely match the power in other lines, and, thereby, achieve power uniformity.
B. Signal Attenuation to Meet Receiver's Dynamic Range
If the output power at the receiver exceeds the upper limit of the receiver's dynamic range, signals may become distorted, leading to high noise in analog systems and errors in digital transmissions.
C. Power Matching in SONET and ATM Systems
Buildout attenuators may be installed at the optical receiver or at the patch panel of SONET and ATM systems to equalize powers at the nodes. The distance between the host and the node can vary by several kilometers depending on the node.
Video applications demand more stringent reflectance and attenuation tolerance specifications. Reflections can degrade the system performance.The buildout attenuator, with an 8 or 9 degree polished end face (APC) meets the low reflectance (≤ 65 dB) requirements. This system may call for attenuators either at the transceiver, or in line.
E. DWDM Systems
As the need to multiplex/demultiplex several narrowly spaced signals increases in DWDM systems, so does the need to match output powers with the receiver's dynamic range. The buildout attenuator is well suited for this application since it is wavelength independent. The designer has the option to insert an attenuator at the detector or patch panel to achieve the proper power level as shown below.
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