Standards Update

March 9, 2020 / General, Standard and Certification

Since the last standards update, I represented Fluke Networks and attended the TR42 meeting in New Orleans and the SC25 WG3 meeting in Sydney Australia. The following are some of the highlights worth noting.

At the TR42.11 meeting, the following projects/topics were reviewed:

A. ANSI/TIA-PN-568.3-E (Optical Fiber Cabling Components)

The next revision (E) of this document has been approved for general updates and any additional content deemed appropriate by the formulating subcommittee. This is a regular part of maintaining the standard and provides an opportunity to update existing content and address relevant new topics.  This process typically takes up to two years, and at this point it’s not clear if any new topics will arise.   ANSI/TIA 568.3-D is a standard that specifies requirements for premises optical fiber cabling, connectors, adapters, test cords, and testing. Polarity in cabling is also described. ANSI/TIA-526-14-D is referenced as the multimode testing standard. ANSI/TIA-526-7, an adoption of IEC 61280-4-2, is referenced as the single-mode testing standard.

B. ANSI/TIA-PN-526.14-D (Optical Power Loss Measurement of Installed Multimode Fiber Cable Plant)

The next version of this document has been approved for revision D. ANSI/TIA-526 is an adaption of IEC 61280-4-1, the multimode attenuation measurement installed cabling standard; IEC 61280-4-1 edition 3 was published in May 2019. Frequently, TIA will simply use an existing IEC standard and put an ANSI/TIA cover sheet on it. In some cases, when there is disputed text, TIA will “adapt” the IEC standard by adding foreword that explains the changes.

One proposal for the TIA-526-14-D adaption is to add information regarding the use of bend insensitive multimode fiber (BIMMF) in test reference cords. Specifically, should either BIMMF or non-BIMMF be allowed in test cords. The adapted IEC standard states that non-BIMMF should be used in all test cords. During previous meetings, TR42.11  discussed and agreed to retain the statements in FOTP-171, FOTP-34, and TIA-526-14-C related to the use of non-bend insensitive fiber for use in launch cables. However, the debate over the use of BIMMF is not over. Other changes for TIA-526-14-D are yet to be determined.  For more detail on using BIMMF test cords, check out my earlier blog post:

Fluke Networks will continue to provide all test cords with non-BIMMF that are used with their optical loss test sets. These non-BIMMF test cords can be used to test fiber cabling installations that use either BIMMF or non-BIMMF. The launch cords produce an encircled flux compliant launch. By the way, BIMMF only applies to 50/125 µm fiber. 62.5 µm fiber is always non-BIMMF.  

At the SC25 WG3 meeting, the following projects/topics were reviewed:

A. ISO/IEC 14763-3 (Testing of optical fibre cabling)

A new committee draft (CD) is in process. During a previous meeting (Nagasaki), assignments were given to individuals most expert in specific areas. The assignments were to update, re-write, re-structure, add content and streamline the document to make it more user friendly. The document and contributions were reviewed in three ad hoc meetings.


- The addition of MPO light source/power meter (LSPM) testing for MPO-to-MPO cabling and for MPO to cassettes and fan out cords (such as our MultiFiber™ Pro.)

- The addition of End-to-End Link LSPM testing

- The addition of MPTL (modular plug terminated link) LSPM testing – this is a plug on one end and an adapter on the other end of a permanent link just like in the copper world.

- Plastic optical fibre testing was removed since there is no requirement in the parent cabling standard

- It was agreed that testing would support ranges up to 10,000 meters  (i.e. single-mode premises installations)

- Remove enhanced three cord referencing method for LSPM. This method is used when the power meter has a fixed interface. Since all power meters require an exchangeable interface connector, this test method offers no advantages over the one cord referencing method. (Read more about one cord reference setting here.)

- Agree to change how the single-mode LC connector is referenced – the LC connector currently does not reference an IEC optical interface (connector) standard

- A working draft has been created that includes all presented input from chapter editors. The document was restructured in line with the Nagasaki agreement. It was noted in the ad hoc that the document is at a very early stage of development and some parts of the working draft have not been reviewed. Sections that have not been reviewed are greyed out within the working draft.