In any fiber optic cable installation, the way the cables are attached to the system, whether at a building entrance, in a wiring closet or at points between the transmitter and the receiver, is vital to the success of the telecommunications network. If done well, this connection allows optical signals to pass with low attenuation and little return loss. One of the proven ways to join optical fibers is with a fiber pigtail, which a fiber cable with a factory-installed connector on one end and unterminated fiber on the other.
Fiber pigtails bridge a critical junction in the fiber-optic network, so installers need to choose products made with reliable components. Because they are basically cable assemblies, pigtails use many of the same parts that experienced fiber-optic technicians are already familiar with, such as a connector, a ferrule, standard fiber and jacket types, including singlemode and multimode varieties.
While each of these components is important, one stands out. An important element is the quality of the connector itself. You need to know certain characteristics, such as insertion loss, the type of polish used and how well the connector is terminated to the cable."
Even with standards, there is significant variance between connector styles and manufacturers. So you have to use fiber and connector types that meet a particular application`s needs. Selecting the proper product depends on job specifications.
Ferrule material, whether zirconia ceramic, plastic or stainless steel, must also be specified when ordering a fiber pigtail. Recently, ceramic ferrules are the main ferrule materials on the market, when it comes to other ferrule material, the cost/performance trade-off isn’t tolerable. If you go with a metal ferrule, it is a waste for any singlemode application, especially if you need Bellcore compliance.
The manufacturer of the optical fiber should also be taken into account. And the main concern is that the same glass be used in the fiber pigtail and in the fiber cable. Because this is one of the key factors in deciding the performance of the overall optical fiber system.