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Table Of Contents  CertiGuide to Network+
 9  Chapter 0001:  LAN Cabling
      9  VII  Fiber-optics

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Fiber-Optic Based Ethernet Cable standards
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VIII  Wireless Networking
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Fiber-Optic Connectors

Once a fiber-optic cable termination has been made, it must be connected to the end-point device. There are a number of different types of fiber-optic connectors.

SMA & ST Connectors

Be able to visually identify the SMA connector

Be able to visually identify Duplex ST connector

While fiber-optics has not found common use in everyday life, fiber-optics has been in use long enough to have a legacy connector. That connector type is known as the SMA connector. The SMA connector features a threaded cap and housing. It has been replaced in large part by the ST connector.

Figure 17: SMA905 and SMA906


The ST connector is the most common connector in use today. The ST is popular both in buildings and finds use in the field. The bayonet mount uses a keyed coupling and utilizes a push/twist installation that prevents over-tighting and subsequent damage of the fiber-optic end. The ST connector is used with both SingleMode and MultiMode fiber. The shape and connection method is similar to a BNC connector (as used for 10Base2 cable connections).

Figure 18: Shows an ST fiber connector


One of the newest connectors in the fiber-optic world is the SC connect. The SC connector is a push-pull connector and while commonly used with SingleMode fiber, there are versions that also work for MultiMode fiber as well. The SC connector can be found as a single connector designed to hold a pair of fiber optic strands and is known as the SC Duplex connector.

[spacer]Extra! SC predicted to beat ST!

The SC connector is becoming more popular than the ST connector. This squared face connector is gaining popularity in part to the fact that it is simpler to install in tight spaces.

Can you see FDDI?

Another connector to be familiar with is the Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI) connector.

Figure 18a: FDDI Connector


[spacer]Polish-Inspect, Polish Again

Splicing a fiber-optic cable used to test the patience and handiwork of the best field installers. Even the smallest deviation from a perfect join would result in loss of light, and therefore signal. This meant cutting and polishing the end of each end of the break, inspecting for a true flat surface (under a microscope) and repeating the process until perfection was achieved. Then the pieces were joined with epoxy glue. Happily, these days are in their sunset as creative manufactures have come up with much faster and simpler connectors to repair breaks.

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Fiber-Optic Based Ethernet Cable standards
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VIII  Wireless Networking
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CertiGuide for Network+ ( on
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