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Fiber optic connectors: Know how to identify them

Fiber optic connectors are common in FTTH (Fiber to the Home) communication networks and the ever expanding 5G infrastructure but are also tapping into opportunities in the power plant, wind turbines and industrial automation industries as well as the ever-increasing usage in enterprise and data center solutions. Fiber optic connectors market are relying on the rapidly growing 5G networking infrastructure to keep businesses expanding. 

Know how to identify them

SC – (Standard/Subscriber Connector)

A fiber-optic cable connector developed by the laboratories at Nippon and telegraph (NTT) that uses a push-pull latching mechanism. It was one of the first connectors to hit the market.
For bi-directional transmission, two fiber cables and two SC connectors (Dual SC) are used.
SC Connectors have a spring loaded 2,5mm ferrules. It has a really good performance and it’s used for data communication, CATV and telephony environments. Its light weight and cost-effective features enable different applications of SC fiber-optic pigtail. SC is specified by the TIA-568-A

LC – (Lucent Connector)

Considered to be the modern replacement of the SC connector. Also, a push-pull connector, the LC utilizes a latch as opposed to the SC locking tab and with a smaller 1,25mm ferrule it is known as a small form factor connector.
It has half the footprint of the SC connector making it popular in datacoms and other high-density patch applications, as its combination of small size and latch feature make it ideal for densely populated racks/panels.

ST – (Straight Tip)

 Developed by AT&T. Uses a bayonet fitting and cannot be terminated with an angle polish, limiting its use in single mode & FTTH applications. The quick connecting bayonet has its advantage in military applications but is predominantly used in corporate and multi-mode networks.

FC – (Ferrule Core)

Was the first optical fiber connector to use a “physical contact polish” ceramic ferrule. The connector end face relies on an alignment key for correct insertion and is then tightened into the adaptor/jack using a threaded collet. 

Despite the additional complexity both in manufacturing and installation, it’s still the connector of choice for precise measuring equipment such as OTDRs. 

The screw-on collet of the FC does make it particularly effective in high vibration environments, ensuring that the spring-loaded ferrule is firmly mated.

E2000 – (Latched Push-pull connectors with automatic metal shutter)

Manufactured under license from Diamond SA. It perfectly centers the fiber core on the axis ferrule that reduces insertion loss to a minimum using active core technology. Additionally, with coloured and/or mechanically coded housing frames and latches provide clear and secure identification of the transition lines.

MTP/MPO – (Multi Fiber Push-on/Pull-off)

Invented by NTT in 1980. Used extensively in high density patch environments such as datacenters but starting to appear in FTTH applications. Ferrule alignment is achieved through high precision guide pins.

Available in 4,8 and 12 fiber versions, PC and APC finishes, and support both multimode and single mode applications. Premium optical performance (low IL and high RL) is a result of advanced polishing technology.

Now that you know more about fiber optic connectors discover a specialized marketplace in telecommunications where you will find all connectors. Check them here.

Related articles: Differences Between Fiber Pigtails and Fiber Patch Cords

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