Fibre Optics - Introduction

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Fibre Optics - Introduction

This introductory course will allow learners at O’ level standard of education to gain an understanding of optical fibre cables and also the basics of fibre networks. Furthermore, in this course learners will also understand how to handle fibre optic cables appropriately and use suitable tools correctly and according to safety regulations.

This course is aimed at people who have prior background in networking and would like to further their knowledge in the latest telecommunications technology. The course is aimed at people with a basic understanding of Physics and Maths ‘O’ level.

This is a 25 hour course. Lessons are held as indicated on the prospectus and website.

This course may include one or more on-site visits to fibre-optic installation sites run by major industry players. While every effort will be done to include such visits in the syllabus these are subject to the availability of the hosting organization. The eventual time and dates of these visits will also be different from the time of the normal lectures.

This course will give learners an introduction to Optics and Optical Fibre; the use of Fibre Optics in Networks; joining two fibres using Fusion Splicing; Health and Safety issues related to handling of Optical Fibres and cables.

Learning Outcome 1: Describe the properties and characteristics of optical fibre cables


Introduction to optical fibre


  • Fundamentals of optics
  • wave-length of light
  • refraction and reflection
  • total internal reflection
  • attenuation of light in glass as a function of the wavelength
  • Principles and technology of fibre manufacturing
  • Optical fibre and its properties
  • Cable technology and types of cable
  • Fibre Connectors
  • Introduction to light sources: lasers and LEDs

Learning Outcome 2: Install an optical fibre cable in a basic network



  • previous, present and future networks
  • Transmission outline: bits, bytes, routers, switches, OSI model, TCP/IP

Learning Outcome 3: Use the correct tools to measure optic fibres


Fusion Splicing

  • Basics of optical fibre splicing
  • what is a fusion splicer and its various parts
  • functions of the splicer

Learning Outcome 4: Follow health and safety regulations when working with optical fibre cables


Health and Safety issues


  • Introduction to the equipment and their handling
  • Handling of optical fibre and fibre cables
  • Lighting, working surface and chairs
  • Cleaning the space before and after working
  • Personal safety

Fusion splicing

  • Preparing different types of fibre for splicing
  • Splicing of single fibres and fibre ribbons
  • Different types of fusion splicers on the market
  • Routine checks on the splicer before using (calibration)
  • Handling of the fibre
  • Cleaning and maintenance of the splicer
  • Splicing an optical fibre
  • Attenuation and loss estimation of the splice
  • Preventive maintenance

The following are the suggested pre-requisites and/or entry requirements needed;

Entry Requirements:


• Have a Physics, Mathematics and English ‘O’ Level (Grade 1- Grade 5) AND a good background in networking (Students need to know Local Area Network technologies (cabling, connections and switches)


• Higher National Diploma in Networking

An MCAST certificate of attendance will be awarded to all students attending more than 80% of lectures

No summative assessment will be held at the end of the course.

However, participants will be given various exercises in class. These are only aimed at confirming that the topics covered have been understood and to provide practical opportunities for participants.

Learners should have the following Consumables: Connectors of cabling, cleaning devices and cleaning material.

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