page has been created as guidelines for FOA members who contribute
to the FOA standards.
are concise standards created by FOA with the participation of
experts in the field for the most common issues affecting fiber
optic network owners, contractors, designers and installers. Each
standard summarizes what the reader needs to know in just 1 page.
Each of the FOA's
will reference other industry standards that are similar and for
which FOA standards may be substituted. These FOA standards
can be used for reference in project paperwork when the user and
contractor need to be certain they know what is being specified
for the project.
Is A Standard?
standard is a “generally accepted practice” (GAP) in the
industry, backed by valid technical reasons for what is
specified. It is intended to be used as a guideline, not a
precise policy to follow, requiring interpretation of its
meaning for each specific application. This means that use of
the standard requires that the users have general knowledge of
the technology and specific knowledge of the situation to which
the standard is being applied. Each standard requires background
information and the FOA will provide links to the appropriate
FOA policy is that all standards have a “1 page
standard” summarizing the standard for ease of use, but each is
backed by technical data and explanations of the options on how
the standard can be applied. The extensive FOA Online Reference
Guide and FOA textbooks provide that background information,
plus includes links to other reference materials.
all standards, FOA Standards will always be "under development"
for updates for new technology and changes, but FOA standards will
continue to be backwards compatible to legacy technologies.
are developing consistent formats for standards to make reading
and understanding them easier. For example, here are guidelines
for standards covering testing.
Standards For Fiber Optic Testing
for testing fiber optic components, cable plants and
communications systems should reflect the way testing is done and
how the results are interpreted. Basically the process can be
divided into separate steps.
needs to be tested?
equipment is needed to perform the tests?
are the procedures for making the test?
are the options required to implement the tests under various
are the sources of error in the measurements?
is required for the tests?
order of these steps is important, since it is the sequence of how
one solves the problem of determining performance values for the
component, subsystem or system under test and establishes the
validity and precision of the measurement. Once one describes the
test methodology itself, it is appropriate to describe the
contributions to the uncertainty of the measurement and ways to
reduce that uncertainty.All standards should include information
on what documentation is needed to validate the record of the
The Installed Fiber Optic Cable Plant (all possible tests, e.g.
continuity, polarity, visual inspection of connectors, insertion
Installed Fiber Optic Cable Plants (Insertion Loss - FOA-1)
Patchcords And Connectors (FOA-2)
Optical Power (Transmitter and Receiver Power) (FOA-3)
Installed Fiber Optic Cable Plants (OTDR tests - FOA-4)
standards under development include:
and Handling of Fiber Optic Cables
Fiber Optic Cable Plants (several will be needed, e.g. choosing
Optic Cable Plants (several will be needed, e.g. pulling
cables, splicing terminating, handling cables, etc.)
referring to FOA
Standards in project
such as when including in a Statement of Work, RFQ, RFP or
contract, it should read something like this: "Testing the
installed fiber optic cable plant shall be done according to FOA
Testing Installed Fiber Optic Cable Plants."
all standards, FOA's Standards are only guidelines for
design, installation and testing of fiber optic networks. The
owner, contractor, designer or installer are always responsible
for the work involved. FOA assumes no responsibility or liability
for the use of these standards nor for any projects using them.