High Power Fiber Cables
Frequently Asked Questions
Unlike regular optical fibers, the connectors attached to either end of a high-power optical fiber are not glued with epoxy or other heat-absorbing materials. Such materials trap the heat and lead to strong power attenuation. Instead, they use air-gap-ferrule technology with connectors that act like heat sinks and protect the fiber from extreme temperatures associated with large output powers.
Yes, many manufacturers add an anti-reflective coating to the ends of the fiber. This prevents the high-power level carried by the fiber from reflecting back into components such as lasers which could damage them.
Fiber-ferrule centricity is a parameter that defines how well-centered the fiber core is with the ferrule outer diameter. The standard value of fiber centricity is 10 µm or less and it represents the offset between the two diameters. Small values of fiber centricity ensure that less power is coupling out of the system which may cause undesired effects.
PVC is known for protecting optical fibers from external stresses, pressure, and sharp bends all while offering great flexibility. In some cases, stainless steel is used instead of plastic to offer greater protection, especially in heavy-duty applications.
No, it is not recommended to mate a high-power optical fiber with a low-power one. Low-power fibers are not designed to support hundreds of watts and are generally smaller than high-power optical fibers. The modal mismatch between the two cables will give rise to substantial energy loss localized at the ends of the fibers. This results in the heating and sometimes even the burning out of the fiber outputs. It is also not recommended to use a mating sleeve as that increases the risk of damaging the fibers.
High-power fiber cables are widely used in pulsed laser systems to transmit pulses with extremely high average powers. They are also very popular in the machining industry for their flexibility and durability. They are found in laser welding applications, laser drilling, etching, and cutting.
High-power fiber cables are typically a few meters long. Commonly used high power fiber cables are 2m, 3m, and 5m long.
High-power fibers can be multimode or single mode. This depends on the size of the core.
It is possible for high-power fiber cables to maintain the polarization of light if the material used to fabricate the fiber is nonlinear. Most optical media are birefringent, and when used to propagate high power levels, the light will accumulate different phases along different directions which could cause the polarization to change.
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