March, 2007

What's New?
Tech Topics: Why are there 4 ways (maybe 5) to test fiber optic cables? (PDF) How do you clean connections?
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The Fiber Optic Association Holds "Fiber To The Home Summit" in Los Angeles

The Fiber Optic Association, Inc. (The FOA) hosted a "Fiber To The Home" Summit Meeting on January 18, 2007 in Los Angeles at LA Trade Technical College. Over 60 representatives of telephone companies, municipalities, equipment suppliers, contractors and schools gathered to discuss the critical need for trained workers if the ambitious plans for FTTH deployment in Southern California were to be realized.
FTTx (the term used for all types of fiber to the home/premises/curb) has become a big market for contractors and installers in Southern California. New subdivisions are being fibered, towns are creating municipal fiber networks and older established neighborhoods are being rebuilt for FTTx. All this is creating an enormous need for trained and certified workers.
The FOA, in its role as the professional society of fiber optics, had been asked by telcos like Verizon and local contractors to assist them in finding trained and certified personnel to make these plans a reality. The FOA invited a diverse group of interested people, including Verizon, Corning, OFS, town technology managers, local schools and contractors to a FTTx Summit in LA. The summit meeting focused on what knowledge and skills were needed by FTTx installers and how the schools could train and certify students for these jobs.
Folllowing the FTTx Summit, there were presentations on FTTx Technology by Corning and OFS, a review of telco plans, job opportunities and requirements by Verizon and presentations on training programs and financial options for contractors. (Left: Jim Hayes, FOA President, moderates a discussion on training installers. To his right are 3 contractors, to his left, Verizon representatives.)

Some highlights of the presentations at the sessions included:
- FTTx installation in new residential construction differs substantially from overlay construction in older neighborhoods.
- Preterminated cabling is being used to simplify many installations, but where traditional installation is required, new tools like smaller, inexpensive splicers and dedicated test equipment has been successfully deployed.
- Two types of technicians will be needed for FTTx installations. Techs with traditional fiber optic skills (cable installation, splicing, termination and testing) will be needed to install the distribution network. Techs doing home installation will need fiber optic skills plus knowledge of the installation and testing of telephones, computers and TVs to install and test the services delivered to the home over fiber.
- In the Western US, there are needs for over 1,250 fiber optic technicians, working for both telcos and contractors on FTTx projects.
- FTTx projects are creating a need for more education for consumers and home builders on the needs for residential cabling infrastructure to support the advanced services delivered by FTTx networks. (RIght: Mark Turner of Corning talking about FTTx technology and markets.)

Verizon (Keith Melanson, right) shared their needs for training FTTx Installation Techs:
-Fiber optic certification (Splicing, cleaning, etc.)
-Home Networking skills/Routers (Wireless and Wired)
-Computer Literacy (Installing software and changing internet settings)
-Experience working with all copper wiring. (CAT 5, Telephone, Coax)
-Experience with Fiber test meters. (Light Readings and basic OTDR skills)
-Testing meters for Telephone (Ohm meters, tone generators, etc.)
-Testing meters for T.V. (Ability to check for proper db levels to provide a clear picture)

Corning and OFS Optics presented their views of FTTx technology, with some highlights:
-The architecture of FTTx must allow for initial distribution cabling installation but random installation to the user, to allow for random nature of subscriber sign-ups.
- Passive optical networks (PONs) dominate, but coupler placement in COs, pedestals or even in aerial closures are used according to the distrbution of homes.
- While the distribution part of the network uses traditional fiber technology (ribbon fiber and fusion splicing), short drops to the home are often preterminated assemblies. In medium length drops, the cable may be preterminated at the one end and spliced on the other.
- Dry water-blocked cables are being used to reduce cable preparation time during installation, a major time savings.
- Cable designs that allow tighter bends are needed for FTTx drops.
- Management capabilities and self-testing at the home terminal reduce installation and test time, as well as costs.

More FTTx Summits Coming - Boston in the Spring? - Instructor Training For Instructors at FOA-Approved Schools
The success of the first FOA FTTx Summit has led to requests to hold similar meetings around the US where FTTx is being implemented. In addition, instructors at the FOA-Approved schools have requested a special instructor training program to assist them in starting FTTx training programs and offering the FOA CFxT FTTx Certification. Plans for these meetings are being finalized by The FOA now.


FOA's CFxT FTTx Certification Program Explained

Read the Broadband Properties article about the FOA FTTx certification program.
Want To Learn More About FTTx?
The FOA has created a special FTTx links page with lots of links to news, market reports, technical articles and vendor technical and product information. Here is a great place to start learning more about FTTx.

Verizon Expanding FiOS, Hiring Fiber Techs in Many California Towns
Verizon is promoting FiOS aggressively and expanding FiOS installations. The photo was shot in Santa Monica, CA over Thanksgiving weekend.
See Broadband Properties for their report on Verizon expansion.
Verizon is looking for fiber techs in more than a dozen communities in Southern California. Besides fiber skills, they also would like other networking and PC skills, to complete installations. See below for more details. And you can apply online.

Finance Group Targets FTTx Contractors, Helping Their Cash Flow

Riviera Finance has been helping companies with their cash flow for more than 37 years. Now they are helping FTTx contractors by providing financial assistance with cash flow, invoice financing, and accounts receiveable management. Riviera Finance will help you get cash for your accounts receivable in as little as 24 hours. Call Drake: (800) 421-1327


FOA Textbooks published in Spanish
The FOA's textbook, The Fiber Optic Technicians Manual, is used by our approved schools around the world to teach fiber optics.
Now we have our textbook in Spanish, we have also translated our CFOT exams and will have other FOA materials available in Spanish soon, greatly facilitating the training of fiber optic technicians in Spanish-speaking countries.
Eric Pearson's book that is used for the CFOS/I reference book, Successful Fiber Optic Installation, is also now available in Spanish.
Contact us if you need more information.
Book Details: Manual Del Technico De Fibra Optica, Published by Thomson Delmar Learning, ISBN 1-4180-6121-2
If you are getting started in fiber optics and Spanish is your native language, you can download an introduction to fiber optics in Spanish here.

NEW-FOA Technical Bulletins/Tech Topics
How do you design and manufacture fiber optic systems? Choose and install one to serve your communications needs? Troubleshoot problems? The FOA Fiber Optic technical Bulletins will provide step-by-step guidelines to help you. All are PDF files you can print and use.
Designing and manufacturing fiber optic communications products for manufacturers.
Choosing, installing and using fiber optic producst for users.
Troubleshooting fiber optic cable plants and communcations systems.
New Tech Topics
Why are there 4 ways (maybe 5) to test fiber optic cables? (PDF)
How do you clean connections?


Job Openings
Verizon: Fiber Network Field Technician (Outside Field Technician)
Openings in the following California areas:
US-CA-Huntington Beach
US-CA-Rancho Cucamonga
US-CA-Redondo Beach
US-CA-Santa Monica
US-CA-San Bernadino

Take your career to new heights at a company that's a leader in global communications: Verizon. We offer an unparalleled opportunity to advance your career while contributing in an enthusiastic, team-oriented environment.
Primary duties include, but are not limited to:
Install, remove, rearrange, program, test, troubleshoot and maintain fiber network services.
Install and configure routers, set top boxes.  May assist with installation of PC software as needed and ensure proper configuration of the customer's PC.  Interact with the Fiber Solution Center as needed.  May install appropriate inside wire/cable.
Install, maintain and repair outside and inside fiber equipment/facilities including inside wiring and fiber jumpers at the distribution hub.
Interface with customer to negotiate the placement of equipment; may assist with account registration, e-mail, and web access, and training the customer on how to use the new equipment.  Ensure customer satisfaction.  Respond to inquiries and provide follow-up, as necessary.
Interpret schematic work order drawings to determine job specifications and installation needs.  Order and/or obtain required equipment.  Effect problem solving where appropriate.
Utilize various test equipment to analyze equipment trouble and take appropriate maintenance action.
Requires high level of customer contact to ensure customer satisfaction.
Climbing poles and ladders; lifting 75-100 pounds on a regular basis; pushing, reaching, bending and stooping; manual dexterity; good sense of balance; and good color vision.
Must have a current/valid California Drivers License and a clean driving record.
Qualified candidates must pass all company required tests, a pre-employment drug screen and a background check. In addition, candidates will be required to successfully pass a legally required DOJ Criminal Records Check/screening process (fingerprinting).
Candidates must be able to work any shift given, including days, weekends, holidays and overtime as required.
Verizon offers:
Hourly rate for this position is $12.87-28.55.  Wage credit may be granted for related work experience and/or college degree.
Benefits include medical, dental, life insurance, 401(k) with Company match and paid vacation
interested candidates should go to to apply AND schedule themselves for testing.
Thank you for showing an interest in Verizon!
Verizon is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer supporting workforce diversity. m/f/d/v. Principals only! 
Get Into The Movie Biz!

Marshall Media in the LA Metro area is building a fiber network to connect movie studios over dark fiber. They need fiber optic experts preferably with video knowledge. Contact Charlie Marshall, Marshall Media Inc, 818-299-4961, "charlie marshall" <>



UIT ­ United Information Technologies

United Information Technologies (UIT) is a provider of Consulting, Staffing and Training Services specializing in servicing the needs of the Telecommunications Industry. We were established in 1987 and now hold major contracts with most of the leading Telecom companies. We have open instructor positions every month!

We are looking for candidates with industry experience and we understand and appreciate the value you can bring to our company!

Our training services include Instructing, Curriculum Development, Testing and Project Management in the fast paced world of fiber optics and POTS. Instructors are needed for all facets of FTTX deployment and maintenance. Assignments vary from daily, weekly and monthly, travel may be required.

Consultants are needed for the following positions:
Training Instructors (Outside Plant, Central Office, Data Services / Broadband, Fiber Optics, Video, Help Desk, Call Center, Sales, Management Education, Soft Skills)
Curriculum Developers (all areas of Development and Telecom Expertise)
Web Designers
Network and Engineering Specialists
Service Center Personnel (Billing, Provisioning and Service Bureau)
System and Application Testers
Quality Assurance Specialists
And more ­ if you don't see your area of expertise, understand we are still interested in you!

UIT offers competitive wages and benefits.


Contact UIT today for your opportunity! Resumes can be submitted via our company website: or directly using the email address of:

Please reference Fiber Optic Association on your application or correspondence

Fiber Optic Technician
This is a direct hire position in Irvine CA

To perform this job successfully, an individual must have knowledge of
G.O. 128, OSHA rules and company safety regulations.
1 year fiber optic experience.
1-2 years maintenance technician experience.
Good verbal and communication skills.
Good mathematical skills and attention to detail.
Must possess thorough knowledge of the following; fiber optic and CATV
test equipment: fusion splicer, OTDR, optical power meter, fiber
identifier, signal meter, fiber phones and VOM. Must possess a valid
California driver's license and have a good driving record.
Ability to work under hazardous conditions, such as working at heights
on telephone poles and bucket trucks.
Must have good visual acuity and good manual dexterity due to the nature
of the work.
Ability to tolerate exposure to outside weather conditions. Ability to
engineer fiber optic telephony and cable television design.
Ability to effectively under stressful deadline situations.
Ability to work flexible schedules and shifts on a regular basis.
Ability to perform standby duty on a regular rotational basis.
Ability to effectively interact with people in all phases of projects.
Thank you once again
Zarine Omran
Sr. Technical Recruiter
111 Pacifica Ste 220
Irvine, CA 92618




Product: Specialty Optical Fiber

This is an excellent and solid company with a twenty-plus year history that is a leader in the design and implementation of specialty fiber optic fiber and assemblies.They have a global reach and a reputation for quality that is unmatched in the industry... They are looking for a dynamic Sr. Process Engineer to assist in designing, developing, and improving the implementation of manufacturing procedures and facilities. There is tremendous growth opportunity with this company.

- Develop written S.O.P.s used in the manufacturing and testing of specialty optical fibers, including metalized fibers.
- Design and implement improvements to all production processes and assume responsibility for the technical guidance on all production operations.
- Recommend fixture design and/or equipment purchases.
- Formulate and implement Statistical Process control (SPC) capability.
- Formulate training procedures and maintain written records for operator status and progress, Train personnel in S.O.P.s, use of related production equipment and in fiber manufacturing techniques.
- Maintain and repair equipment. Establish and maintain preventative maintenance and calibration schedules.
- Provide liaison and support, as necessary, to production in the research and development of new fibers and fiber products.
- Prepare for full scale production capabilities, based on new/revised production specs.
- Operate fiber drawing towers, assist in testing, as necessary.


However, the company is willing to look at a more junior process engineer who would have the opportunity to grow into an advanced position with them.

Al Bratland ð President

Bratland & Associates, Inc.
P.O. Box  63 St. James MN. 56081
Phone: 507-375-4110 ð Email:

A Preferred Member of Top Echelon Network of Recruiters

Optical Fiber UV Coating Consultant / Scientist

MinoTech Engineering has an immediate need for a recognized expert in the field of UV curable coatings for high speed application to optical fibers.  The preferred candidate must meet the following requirements:
o                     Optical Fiber Coating Formulation expert, able to develop new primary and secondary coatings or reformulate existing coatings to address technical needs.
o                     Experienced in the formulation of fiber optic coatings suitable for high speed application (1,500m/min ­ 1,800 m/min line speed).
o                     Familiar with the advantages and disadvantages of commercial fiber optic coatings available from the major suppliers and able to relate coating performance to formulation.
o                     Experienced in all aspects of primary and secondary coating specification and testing including: Density, Refractive Index, Gel Flow Time, Surface Tension, Thermal Conductivity, Modulus, Tensile Strength, Elongation, Tgel (Cure speed), Tg, Glass Peel, coefficient of friction, Soxhlet Extractables, Water Absorption, Water Extractables, Cure Shrinkage and others.
o                     Has understanding of high speed fiber optics draw and the relationship between draw conditions, coating specifications, coating die design and technical problems relating coating specification to draw speed, draw tension, attenuation and optical performance including attenuation. 
o                     Familiar with all practical issues relating to coating handling in the optical fiber manufacturing environment, including coating storage and on-tower delivery systems to the coating die. 
o                     Knowledge and familiarity with common coating die designs.
o                     Knowledge of coating handling and safety considerations.
o                      Prospective candidates must exhibit excellent writing skills and be able to communicate complex chemical concepts in easy to understand language. Consultant must be highly motivated and able to work independently. 
o                     An advanced technical degree (Ph.D. preferred) in Chemistry, or Material Science, and with at least three years experience in a development environment is required.
MinoTech Engineering™ Inc. provides Science and Engineering consulting services to technology based firms in Medical & Life Sciences, Fiber Optics & Photonics and Advanced Materials. Our consultants assist companies to improve their competitiveness by providing Product Development & Commercialization Consulting Services addressing all facets of the 'Commercialization Cycle'.
MinoTech Engineering consultants work 'hands on' at clients facilities, supporting company personnel to develop new products, improve their manufacturing processes or address long term strategic issues. More information is available at <> .
Individuals interested in this consulting assignment should reply by e-mail to <> and send an electronic copy of their resume to my attention.
MinoTech Engineering consultants undergo our stringent quality evaluation and must meet our high standards for demonstrated expertise, work quality and ethics. Our consultants are bound by confidentiality, non-disclosure, and non-compete contracts which assure clients that their proprietary information will be handled appropriately. When a client engages MinoTech Engineering, they can be confident that project management and quality control are always maintained at the highest levels.
Successful candidates will be assigned to projects based on their experience, technical requirements and client needs. Candidates should be able to dedicate a minimum of 15 ­ 20 hours per week, working independently at client sites. Interested candidates should reply to this posting no later than December 31, 2006.  This posting will close on December 31, 2006.  

Dr. Michael J. Minot
MinoTech Engineering Inc.
%JRD Technology Center
242 Sturbridge Road
Charlton, MA 01507
978-474-8034 (office)
978-475-4047 (fax)
978-852-4942 (cell)

National Communications Training Centers (NCTC) is currently looking to hire an evening instructor. The candidate must have 2 plus years experience with HANDS ON fiber installation and be FOA certified. The class hours are 6pm to 10 pm Monday through Thursday for 6 weeks.
National Communications Training Centers (NCTC) is now nationally accredited by ACCSCT as well as graduates receive BICSI credits upon completion of the course.
Please fax (only) a resume to 760-471-0291.
Dan Postoskie
Director of Training
National Communications Training Centers
1324 E. Mission Rd.
San Marcos, CA, 92069
Also Check Recent Job Openings In Previous Issues of The FOA Newsletter


Tech Puzzler
What connector is this? We're going to run a few months of having you try to identify fiber optic connectors, some common, some obscure. Recognize this one? It's a duplex connector designed for the first fiber-specific LAN.
Answer below

Understanding FOA Certifications
To answer questions on FOA certifications, we've created several new web pages:
Overview of FOA certifications
Training Requirements - What Schools Are Teaching
Reading these will help you understand what each FOA certification covers and how to prepare for them.

New Professional Society for Structured Cabling Recognizes Importance of Fiber Optics (and Wireless)
The new Structured Cabling Association, Inc. ( is a professional society aimed at installers of "structured cabling" or premises cabling. Structured cabling has been focused on so-called "Cat 5" or UTP cabling for years, while network speeds have left UTP behind. Now most backbones for LANs are fiber optics and every network seems to have wireless. The SCA, founded in part by FOA activists Tom Collins and Jim Hayes, intends to make structured cabling training and certification more relevant to today's world.

New: FOA Logo Merchandise
FOA has arranged with EmbroidMe to provide FOA logo merchandies. Identify yourself as a FOA-certified tech or instructor. The lab coats are super impressive for either cabling techs and instructors. Check out the selection.



FOA CFOT Renewals Get Free Copy of NECA/FOA Installation Standard
Every CFOT renewal will now receive a free copy of NECA 301-2004, Installing And Testing Fiber Optic Cables, produced by The FOA in cooperation with NECA (The National Electrical Contractors Association). This is an important reference document for defining the installation and testing of fiber optic cable plants in a "neat and workmanlike manner."
The FOA feels this is such an important document that we are giving a free copy (normally priced at $15) to every active CFOT when they renew their active status.
The FOA has also sent free copies to all FOA-Approved schools. The new FOA CFOT exam to be used after August, 2005, will include questions from the standard. Schools should be including information from the standard in their classes already.


New Tech Topics

FOA Tech Bulletins - for those designing FO communications products or installing cable plants.
How do you design and manufacture fiber optic systems? Choose and install one to serve your communications needs? Troubleshoot problems? The FOA Fiber Optic Technical Bulletins will provide step-by-step guidelines to help you. All are PDF files you can print and use.
Designing and manufacturing fiber optic communications products for manufacturers.
Choosing, installing and using fiber optic products for users.
Troubleshooting fiber optic cable plants and communcations systems.


Does Glass "Flow"? Is it really a liquid?


FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) on General Topics and Testing

Fiber Or Copper? Making decisions, overview and LANs

What Happens When You Mate Mismatched MM Fibers?

New PowerPoint Presentation Introduces Fiber Optics - in English or Spanish!
The FOA has created a short PowerPoint presentation that introduces you to fiber optics and talks about job opportunities in the field. It was intended for instructors to introdcue studnets to the field, but it's a good introduction for anyone. It's about 3 meg file so it takes a while to download and you need PowerPoint to view it. See

FOA Certification Top Choice

The FOA CFOT and CFOS programs continue to gain momentum in fiber optics. Over 20,000 CFOTs have been certified by over 160 schools as the FOA enters its 12th year. Since our founding in July, 1995, we have dedicated ourselves to promoting fiber optics and professionalism in fiber optics personnel, focusing on education and certification. We are continuing to add new schools and more CFOTs as users of fiber optics learn that a CFOT is the indication of a professional, well-trained fiber optic technician. Now with FTTH (fiber to the home) finally taking off, demand for CFOTs is rising and schools are responding by expanding programs rapidly.
The FOA now has approved programs at 160+ organizations, welcoming new additions like the Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Corning Cable Systems and AFL for their installation training programs and NASA's Goldstone Tracking Station. The complete list of FOA-Approved schools is at



Your Name, CFOT - It pays to advertise!

The FOA encourages CFOTs to use the logo on their business cards, letterhead, truck or van, etc. and provides logo files on this site for that purpose. But we are also asked about how to use the CFOT or CFOS certifications. Easy, you can refer to yourself as "Your Name, CFOT" or "Your Name, CFOS/T" for example.

Feel free to use the logo and designations to promote your achievements and professionalism!


Remember To Renew Your Certification !

Remember to renew your FOA certification. All current CFOTs have a ID Card with their certification data and we keep a database of current CFOTs to answer inquiries regarding your qualifications if needed. If you forgot to renew, use the online application form or the FOA online store to renew NOW!



To Contact The FOA:
The Fiber Optic Association
1119 S Mission Road, # 355
Fallbrook, CA 92028
Office Hours 10AM-5 PM Pacific Time
Telephone: 760-451-3655
Fax: 781-207-2421

Want to write for the FOA Newsletter? Send us articles, news, anything you think might be interesting to the rest of the membership!

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(C)1999-2006, The Fiber Optic Association, Inc.


Tech Puzzler: FDDI

It's the FDDI connector, designed as a duplex connector for "Fiber Distributed Data Interface", the first all fiber LAN, which used a dual counter-rotating ring architecture for fail-safe operation.
See the FOA Tech Topics Connector ID page.