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Fiber Optic Field Equipment

In optical measurement technology, different measurement devices are used to test optical fibers. In addition to analyzers and power measurement devices, optical sources that can be readout with the help of monitors are also used.

Polarization Mode Dispersion Module for MTS-6000/-8000 Platforms

Optical Dispersion Modules

Measurement devices used to determine chromatic dispersion (CD) and polarization-mode dispersion (PMD).

Dispersion Loss Tester

The transmission quality of high-speed optical networks is affected by dispersion. Dispersion refers to the degradation of the transmission signal caused by spectral and polarization effects in the optical fiber.

The MTS-6000 and MTS-8000 measurement devices and the corresponding measurement module are used to determine dispersion.

The ODM module, which works with the MTS-6000 and MTS-8000 base units, combines the following measurements in a single plug-in module: chromatic dispersion (CD), polarization-mode dispersion (PMD), and attenuation profile (AP). For CD measurement, this module uses the patented phase-shift method, which ensures fast and precise measurement results. The fiber can be characterized across the entire wavelength range from 1260 nm to 1640 nm.



  • Testing high-speed networks (40 Gb/s and faster)
  • Testing DWDM/CWDM systems
  • Testing transmission paths with optical amplifiers
  • Testing metro networks


Possible Measurements

The measurement of CD, PMD, and AP is required to comprehensively characterize optical fibers.

  • CD – Chromatic Dispersion

    • Measurement using phase-shift method
    • Characterization of the entire wavelength range
    • Operational in each fiber type
    • High dynamic range up to 55 dB

  • PMD – Polarization-mode Dispersion

    • based on the fixed polarization filter method via fast Fourier transform (FFT)
    • Dynamic range up to 65 dB

  • AP – Attenuation Profile

    • dB attenuation/km across the entire wavelength range from 1260 nm to 1640 nm
    • Allows characterization of CWDM and DWDM transmission bands
    • Characterization of the water peak at 1383 nm

The measurement of polarization-mode dispersion is the most critical parameter to consider when having a fiber approved for the transmission of high data rates. The higher the data rate to be transmitted, the more critical this value becomes.

The PMD plug-in module for the MTS-6000 and MTS-8000 base units works with the fixed polarization filter method (fixed analyzer) standardized by the ITU-T, IEC, and TIA/EIA. Using the PMD module, the PMD runtimes and the PMD coefficient can be measured and the second-order PMD calculated. This unit can be combined with different handheld broadband light sources.



  • Fast measurement requires just 6 seconds
  • Dynamic range up to 58 dB – irrespective of the PMD value
  • PMD range up to 60 ps
  • Combines chromatic dispersion and attenuation profile in a single module



  • Qualification of DWDM/CWDM networks from 10G up to 40G/100G
  • Modern PMD measurement before and after installation
  • Characterization of underground and above-ground networks, submarine cables, amplified and non-amplified links, and ultra-long haul networks

In an optical fiber, chromatic dispersion refers to different runtimes for different wavelengths. They lead to a broadening of the pulse and ultimately a restriction of the transmission range of the optical fiber. Chromatic dispersion is the dominant dispersion in single-mode fibers – it is a material property.


In optical telecommunications applications, a light pulse consists of several wavelengths and their respective runtimes (group velocity); therefore, the determination of dispersion is crucial, for example,

  • during or directly after installation of the fiber
  • before performing an upgrade to higher bit rates in order to determine if and how large CD compensation has to be
  • during maintenance/repair of a fiber to verify the installed fiber type

If optical fibers are damaged by internal or external influences, the fiber will become birefringent (e.g., when bent or in a misaligned fiber core). The two perpendicular polarization planes have different running speeds, and the pulse broadens. The PMD is a statistical value that can change due to external influences such as a shift, mechanical strain, or temperature fluctuations.


The polarization-mode dispersion should be measured if:

  • an existing network receives an upgrade to a bit rate of 10 Gbps or 40 Gbps
  • a new 40 Gbps or higher ultra-long-haul network is installed
  • fibers should be qualified during manufacturing
  • fibers should be measured during or after cabling

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Your contact person

Dr. Christina Manzke

+49 (0) 3301 522 99 98