Share Email Print

Proceedings Paper

On the Accuracy of Fiber Loss Measurements
Author(s): Ajay Luthra; Dean Messing
Format Member Price Non-Member Price
PDF $17.00 $21.00

Paper Abstract

Making fiber loss measurements is one of the prime functions of an Optical Time Domain Reflectometer (OTDR). But the literature on the subject lacks the characterization of the signal processing algorithms used for this purpose. In this paper, we establish a theoretical upper bound on the measurement accuracy for a given noise level. We also analyze and characterize how sampling rate, number of samples used for calculation, and fiber loss affect accuracy. This gives a yardst-ick to measure the. performance of an algorithm or an instrument. If the performance is far from the theoretical limits then one can expect to improve it by alternative means; otherwise it is as good as can be achieved. We use three fiber loss measurement techniques to gather results on measurement accuracy: (i) line-fit to log data , (ii) autoregressive modeling, and (iii) polynomial-fit to unlogged data. We then compare the measured accuracy of the three methods with the theoretical bounds for different noise levels. This clearly shows the circumstances under which their accuracy falls short of the theoretically predicted value. In those situations an improvement is possible with some other method. Finally, we illustrate how alternative techniques can not improve accuracy when it is already as good as the theoretical limit.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 January 1990
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 1180, Tests, Measurements, and Characterization of Electro-Optic Devices and Systems, (23 January 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.963457
Show Author Affiliations
Ajay Luthra, Tektronix Inc. (United States)
Dean Messing, Tektronix Inc. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1180:
Tests, Measurements, and Characterization of Electro-Optic Devices and Systems
Shekhar G. Wadekar, Editor(s)

© SPIE. Terms of Use
Back to Top
Sign in to read the full article
Create a free SPIE account to get access to
premium articles and original research
Forgot your username?