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Fiber optic connector end-face contamination is a leading cause of fiber failures. Dirt and contaminant cause insertion loss and back-reflection that inhibits optical transmission and causes havoc with transceivers. Fiber loss and OTDR testing can expose this problem, but in many cases, dirty connections make fiber testing time consuming and inaccurate.
Since dirt can be an issue before, during, or after fiber optic certification testing, and migrate from one fiber optic connector end-face to another upon mating, both sides of any connection must always be cleaned and inspected. Further, mating contaminated fiber optic connectors can cause permanent damage as microscopic debris is crushed between end-faces in physical contact.
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