Testing. Equipment Installation, Testing and Maintenance
Successful installation of a fiber optic cable on a cellular tower requires understanding the installation as well as how to handle, inspect, clean and test the cables. That includes the cable up the tower and the patchcords used on the top and bottom of the tower to connect active equipment.
When dealing with prefab cables, testing involves careful cleaning and inspection with a microscope, insertion loss testing and in some cases, OTDR testing.
Like any fiber optic cable and especially any prefab cable, the tower cable should not be installed until it has been tested to confirm that the cable is OK. This also includes the patchcords used on the tower. Even short cables can cause major problems if they have been damaged or are not clean. Handheld Cable and Antenna Analyzers offer measurement capabilities including precision return loss/VSWR, cable loss and distance-to-fault (DTF) measurements. These Analyzers help field technicians perform field verification and fault location to detect problems before they become costly, time-consuming system failures. A wide variety of applications such as VHF, broadcasting, paging, cellular, GPS, PCS/GSM, 3G, ISM, WLAN and WLL are supported by testing using antenna test sets and base station test sets. Antenna Path Alignment Test Sets are used for accurate antenna alignment to optimize microwave link reliability. With Antenna Path Alignment Test Sets, tower technicians can now accurately align antennas during antenna installation or during routine maintenance. Testing includes cleaning and inspecting the connectors, checking continuity with a visual fault locator (VFL), then do a loss test with an optical loss test set to determine if all fibers are OK. Recording this data will help in the final test, after the cable has been installed, by comparing losses before and after installation to see if any damage was done during installation. At Beeline Telecommunications, we offer quality test equipment and testing technician to your cell site.