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Connectors and splices link the ends of two fibers both optically and mechanically. The two are not interchangeable. A connector is mounted on the end of a cable or optical device so it can be attached to other cables or devices. Like electrical connectors, fiberoptic connectors can be plugged and unplugged. In contrast, splices are permanent junctions between a pair of fiber ends. The cables attached to your television and stereo have connectors on the end so they can be plugged into other components. Splices are the optical equivalent of permanent solder joints.
This chapter starts by explaining their applications and their common operating
principles, then describes connector properties and types, and splicing. Chapter 14 will cover couplers, which in fiber optics are quite different from connectors and splices.
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