The Light Brigade FO 1-2-3 Course at OPTOKON



DAY ONE/TWO – 12 Hours Classroom Training

Classroom training covers an introduction to fiber optics, basic fiber theory, optical fiber types, standards, cable types, cable structures, connectors, and mechanical/fusion splicing, cable and fiber management products.  Classroom instruction also covers fiber-optic installation, testing, maintenance, restoration, and safety disciplines.

 A fiber-optic system design overview will also be taught, including how to develop an optical loss budget for multimode and single-mode systems.

 The course is instructor lead using power point presentation highlights key points of the training manual and uses interesting graphics, photographs and examples to explain concepts and practical application in the field.  Several DVD chapters are used to take students “into the field” to provide practical use and explanation of the more technical aspects – increasing student interest and retention of the class material.

 DAY TWO/THREE – 12 Hours Hands-on Training (8:1 student to instructor)

Workstations are set up as described on the following pages.  Students spend approximately 3-4 hours at each workstation, rotating through each workstation until all tasks are completed.  Students will break into groups with one instructor per group – this low ratio ensures each student receives all the one-on-one training necessary to fully understand and learn how to perform fibre-optic installation, testing and troubleshooting in the field.


 Class review and certification testing


Learn how to safely and properly prepare fibre-optic cable for acceptance testing, splicing, termination and mid-entries on communication systems.  An outline of hands-on training covered at this workstation includes:


  • Prepare distribution, breakout and loose-tube cables
  • Learn how to perform a fanout on outdoor cable structures
  • Learn how to properly document an acceptance test on reels of cable
  • Learn how to prepare a fibre optic closure
  • Learn how to ground a cable into a closure
  • Learn how to splice a mid-entry
  • Learn how to transfer fibres from storage trays to splice trays
  • Learn how to organize and dress splice trays
  • Learn how to organize jumpers and pigtails in the panel/closure
  • Learn about possible points of failure and their prevention



This workstation includes background material on optical fibres, cables, cleaving tools, techniques and disciplines associated with optical splicing.  The focus of the module is the fusion and mechanical splicing of optical fibres in temporary, permanent and emergency restoration applications. 

 A fibre network depends on splice quality and workmanship. This workstation provides both the skill and knowledge components to perform correct splicing operations for various applications.  Students will learn how to:


  • Correctly strip 250 and 900 micron optical fibres using two separate techniques
  • Correctly cleave optical fibres using cleaving tools
  • Learn how to properly place splice protectors over fusion splices
  • Learn how to correctly fusion splice G.652 & G.655 single mode fibres
  • Learn how to adjust your fusion splice to compensate for environmental issues
  • Learn how to pigtail splice from 250 to 900 micron fibres
  • Learn the different OTDR signatures for fusion and mechanical splices
  • Learn how to document splice losses
  • Learn how to perform mechanical splices for quick restoration
  • Learn troubleshooting procedures for splicing




This workstation instructs and educates students on OTDR operation and its use in fibre-optic communication systems.


The module content includes background material on theory, operation, and applications of the OTDR.  The theory will explain OTDR operation, terminology, and functions.  Applications will include optical cable acceptance testing, monitoring splices, and installed optical cables, and how the OTDR is used during maintenance and restoration of optical cables.  These topics are applied to the hands-on portion of the module during the OTDR operation training.


The OTDR is an important tool for fibre-optic testing and troubleshooting.  Students will learn to:

  • Operate an OTDR
  • Setup and calibrate an OTDR
  • Perform the OTDR basic functions:

            - acceptance testing (reel)

            - splice & span loss testing

            - use of the OTDR for restoration

            - reading various OTDR signatures for troubleshooting



This workstation instructs and educates students on proper connectorization of optical fibres for communication systems. Background material is provided on optical fibres, cables, connector styles, bonding techniques, cleaving tools, and related test and inspection equipment. 

 The focus of the workstation is to enhance the abilities of the technician to connectorize distribution, breakout, and loose-tube cables in addition to standard cordage.  The workstation will focus on techniques that improve optical performance while increasing yield.  

 Students learn how to terminate optical fibres using several bonding methods, such as epoxy oven cure and quick cure using anaerobic adhesive. Students will:


  • Terminate ST and SC connectors
  • Visually inspect fibre endfaces and learn the quality control criteria
  • Test built assemblies for optical loss
  • Troubleshoot terminations for loss and failures – discerning which connector end has failed



This workstation instructs and educates students on optical loss testing for fibre-optic communication systems.  Background material is included on light sources, power meters, and optical loss test sets used in testing fibre-optic transmission equipment and end-to-end cable spans.

 Work and skill sheets assist the operator in documenting fibre equipment and spans.  This information is critical for demonstrating and instructing students in the applications and operations of optical loss test equipment.

 OLTS -- Optical Loss Testing is required for testing fibre-optic systems to establish loss over the span.  The following is covered:


  • Measuring your equipment’s transmit power
  • Measuring your equipment’s receive power
  • How to perform end-to-end and link loss measurements
  • Documentation
  • Troubleshooting using:

- Test sets

- Visual fault finders