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Basic fiber optics and loss testing (IL and ORL)

This course is designed for beginners in fiber optics, but also serves as a good refresher for field-experienced technicians to structure and consolidate their know-how.

1 day On-site
All courses Basic fiber optics and loss testing (IL and ORL)
All courses Basic fiber optics and loss testing (IL and ORL)


After completing this course, you will have a substantial comprehension of light propagation theory and an overall understanding of the fundamentals of fiber optics. This course also covers loss testing methods, particularly insertion loss (IL) and optical return loss (ORL). The testing part of the course includes theory and hands-on sessions for both IL and ORL measurements.

  • Advantages of fiber optics over copper wire
  • Principles of light propagation
  • Causes of fiber attenuation
  • Common types of fibers and connectors (pros and cons)
  • Sources, detectors and other fundamental components
  • Difference between measurements units: watts, dBm, dB
  • Insertion loss measurements using an optical source and a power meter
  • Referenced measurements in dB
  • Causes of reflectance in the fiber
  • Reflectance measurements using a backreflection meter
  • Reflectance vs. ORL


  • Basic comprehension of physics and mathematics


The training consists mainly of lectures using PowerPoint presentations and demonstrations, but also includes specific hands-on workshops on IL and ORL testing.


Attendees will receive a binder containing copies of presentations and other handouts.

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