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Monday - May 9, 2022

Supporting Fiber Optic Expansion with Precise Splicing Equipment

Fusion fiber optic splicing is a method of permanently joining two optical fibers using a dedicated instrument to align, heat and fuse the ends together. This equipment used to be costly, cumbersome, and require significant expertise to operate. However, in the past decade, engineers have developed more portable and user-friendly machines to meet the needs of this growing market.

Main Types of Fusion Splicers

There are two ways that technicians can splice an optical fiber: mechanical or fusion. Mechanical splicing requires significant technical knowledge and experience to achieve an optimal splice. On the other hand, fusion splicing involves more complex equipment but helps ensure minimal splice loss and maximum cable integrity.

Within the fusion splicing category, the equipment can perform either cladding alignment or core alignment fiber optic splicing. Core alignment technology is the gold standard and delivers the lowest possible optical splice loss. These machines can precisely align the cables using cameras and stepping motors in order to minimize human error.

Precise Fiber Optic Splicing with PM Stepping Motors

How can engineers design equipment with the best alignment capabilities? Cameras are used to locate the core of each fiber and PM stepping motors enable micro-adjustments along multiple axes to ensure proper core alignment. After the core is accurately aligned, heat is applied to fuse the two ends together.

In this application, a PM motor with gearbox is beneficial to lower the speed and rotor inertia of the motor to optimize performance. Permanent magnet motors also offer strong positioning stability compared to other motors and remain motionless when in a stopped position.

In addition to gearboxes, there are other custom options available such as flexible mounting, position sensors (hall) and custom shafts and windings. If you are interested in learning more about stepping motors for precise positioning applications, reach out to one of our local engineers.

Kota Iizuka
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