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Two Types Of Fiber Terminations: Connectors And Splices

Views: 2620     Author: Curry     Publish Time: 2021-10-19      Origin: www.fcst.com

Optical fiber termination refers to the physical connection between Patch Cord or wires and equipment. It is a necessary step for optical fiber networking and provides a convenient way for optical fiber cross-connection and light wave signal distribution. We usually have two ways to terminate fiber optic cables-using connectors or splicing.

Connector Termination Introduction

When performing Patch Cord termination, the connector can be placed at the end of the optical fiber harness. Since the introduction of fiber optic technology decades ago, a variety of connector types have been developed, such as SC, FC, or LC. Optical Connector is composed of three main components: ferrule, connector and coupling mechanism.

Traditional Epoxy Resin/Polished Optical Connector

Epoxy/polished Optical Connector is a very traditional and widely used connector. You may find that most of the factory-manufactured connectors are epoxy/polished Optical Connectors. This is due to the consideration of multiple factors. /The polishing type has low cost and low loss performance, which is relatively reliable compared with other types. The optical fiber wire is glued to the connector with epoxy resin, and the end is polished with a special polishing film. This kind of traditional epoxy and polished Optical Connectors are mostly used in fiber optic network deployments that require the use of a large number of connectors.

Fast Connector

Fast Connector, a fiber stub is glued into the ferrule, the end face of the ferrule is polished to the PC/UPC/APC surface, and the other end of the fiber is cut and placed in the connector body. It is more expensive than epoxy/polished Optical Connector. The figure below shows the Fast Connector component of FCST.

Two Types Of Fiber Terminations-Connectors And Splices (2)

Figure 1:FCST SC Optical Connector

It is recommended to use a visual fault locator to monitor the loss during termination, because once there is a problem with the termination process, you will lose both the connector and both connectors. It is suitable for wiring applications that use less connectors and often need to be moved, added, changed or tested.

Splicing Termination Type

Fusion splicing is another commonly used termination type in field termination without any connectors. It can be further subdivided into mechanical splicing and welding.

Mechanical Splicing

Mechanical splicing is the connection of two or more optical fibers, which are precisely aligned and fixed in place by mechanical components. It should be noted that the optical fibers that are mechanically spliced together are not permanently connected, but are precisely fixed and held together so that light can enter another optical fiber from one optical fiber.

Since the whole process of mechanical splicing is relatively simple and quick, it is generally used when time and professional skills are limited. Fiber optic technicians usually use mechanical splicing in indoor transmission cables.


Fusion splicing uses the heat generated by the arc to achieve fiber termination, also known as arc fusion. Unlike mechanical splicing, fusion splicing requires a fusion splicer, which intuitively shows that its cost is higher. When the fusion splicing process begins, you should remove all the protective coatings on the ends of each fiber, then cut the fibers with a high-precision fiber cleaver, and align the fiber ends with a fusion splicer, and finally make them "fused" or "welded" using an arc. The figure below shows the FCST fusion splicer.

Two Types Of Fiber Terminations-Connectors And Splices (3)

figure 2:FFS-60D Core To Core Alignment Fiber Fusion Splicer

Splicing is usually used in outdoor, long-distance and high-performance single-mode networks. More importantly, fusion splicing is also required in factories that manufacture fiber optic equipment such as fiber lasers and amplifiers.

Connector Termination And Splicing Termination: Which Is Better?

At present, there is no uniform standard in the industry to judge whether the optical fiber termination is better to use connectors or splicing. The choice of which is better depends on various factors. Refer to the advantages and disadvantages of connectors and splicing listed below. You might get some help.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of connector termination?

1. Benefits

Compared with fusion splicing, it is easier to use the connector to operate, without the use of a fusion splicer, saving time and economic costs.

2. Disadvantages

The optical loss of the connector termination is higher than the optical loss of the fusion termination.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of splicing termination?

1. Benefits

Compared with the use of connectors, splicing not only provides a stronger and more reliable joint, but also has lower insertion loss.

Splicing can be used to mix several different types of optical cables, for example, one 48-core optical cable can be connected to six 8-core optical cables.

2. Disadvantages

Splicing requires operators with professional skills, and the cost of splicing and assembly may be very large.

Splicing and assembly limits the storage capacity of the battery, which is not convenient when working outdoors.


In the deployment of optical fiber networks, in addition to the two on-site termination types of optical fiber cables, pre-terminated optical fiber cables are becoming more and more popular. They can be installed immediately without having to terminate and test on site. Even so, for some situations, such as long-distance transmission or wiring hidden on the wall, field termination is better because it has higher flexibility. In general, please consider factors such as labor, tools, cost, etc., and then decide which solution is more suitable for your project.

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