OTDR test

An optical time-domain reflectometer (OTDR) is an optoelectronic instrument used to characterize an optical fiber. An OTDR is the optical equivalent of an electronic time domain reflectometer. It injects a series of optical pulses into the fiber under test and extracts, from the same end of the fiber, light that is scattered (Rayleigh backscatter) or reflected back from points along the fiber. The scattered or reflected light that is gathered back is used to characterize the optical fiber. This is equivalent to the way that an electronic time-domain meter measures reflections caused by changes in the impedance of the cable under test. The strength of the return pulses is measured and integrated as a function of time, and plotted as a function of fiber length.
The reliability and quality of an OTDR is based on its accuracy, measurement range, ability to resolve and measure closely spaced events, measurement speed, and ability to perform satisfactorily under various environmental extremes and after various types of physical abuse. The instrument is also judged on the basis of its cost, features provided, size, weight, and ease of use.
Some of the terms often used in specifying the quality of an OTDR are as follows:
Accuracy: Defined as the correctness of the measurement i.e., the difference between the measured
value and the true value of the event being measured.
Measurement range: Defined as the maximum attenuation that can be placed between the instrument and the event being measured, for which the instrument will still be able to measure the event within acceptable accuracy limits.
Instrument resolution: Is a measure of how close two events can be spaced and still be recognized as two separate events.