How to Choose the Right Fiber Optic Patch Cable - Part 3

We have already dealt with usage and the different types and quality characteristics of the ACT fibre patch cables in Articles 1 and 2. In this article, we'll look at building a patch cable and what fibers and connectors are used in patch cables.

Step 4: How is a fiber optic patch cable structured?

A fiber optic patch cable consists of the following elements:
  • The fiber

  • Primary and secondary coating: strengthens the fiber and makes it suitable for installation.

  • Kevlar: The fiber is protected against tensile stress by the Kevlar / Aramid around the secondary coating.

  • The outer sheath: strengthens the construction and protects the cable from external influences.

The most important feature of Kevlar is that it is very strong. Kevlar is used in bulletproof vests and high-end speaker systems. This makes Kevlar ideal for protecting the fiber.

Step 5: Which fibers and connectors are used in patch cables?

Fiber optic patch cables are available with different fiber types and connectors. The best option to use depends on the application and whether you want to extend an existing network.

Multimode fibers - for short distances

Multimode fibers are used for short distances and have an LED or a VCSEL as a light source. These fibers are limited in length and speed. Several generations of multimode fibers are available, from OM1 to OM5.

Single-mode fibers - for long distances

Single-mode fibers are used for longer distances and have an almost infinite bandwidth. The light source of a single-mode fiber is a laser that is more powerful and accurate, but also more expensive than an LED or a VCSEL. In recent years, however, the price difference has steadily narrowed, so that single mode is increasingly used for short distances.

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