OTDR Launch Box

What’s an OTDR Launch Box – and Why Do You Need One?

Optical Time Domain Reflectometer (OTDR) is a mandatory fiber optic testing tool which uses light backscattering technologies to analyze optical fiber performance. An OTDR can test the light loss and locate the breaks, splices and connectors in fiber optic network.

However, an OTDR has a Dead Zone which can affect the test results. To overcome the limitation of this OTDR dead zone, an OTDR Launch Box is used.

Basics of an OTDR Launch Box

The OTDR Launch Box has many other names – Dead Zone Box, Pulse Suppressor, Fiber Ring and Fiber Optic Launch Cable. How can an OTDR Launch Box minimize the effect of OTDR dead zone during fiber optic testing?

The dead zone of OTDR is caused by a number of factors including the high return level of reflection and the pulse width emitted from the OTDR – and might extend hundreds of yards from the OTDR. Because the dead zone is the initial length of fiber optic cable just after the OTDR, a length of ‘Dummy Cable’ is used to mitigate the dead zone distance. Thus, the receiver of the OTDR signal will have enough time to settle.

In short, the OTDR Launch Box, is actually a long spool of dummy optical fiber inserted between the fiber under test and OTDR, and can ensure that the OTDR dead zone happens in the OTDR launch box. In this way, the fiber optic link under test won’t be largely affected by the OTDR dead zone.

Did you know that Multicom’s MUL-OTDR-1000 and MUL-OTDR-1100 are the highest quality and best priced OTDRs on the market?