Editor's Picks

Aug. 1, 2016

NaviTEK NT tests and troubleshoots PoE, POTS, ISDN networks

Ideal Networks now offers its NaviTEK NT testers, which the company said “are helping technicians work more productively thanks to a comprehensive new suite of testing and troubleshooting functionalities.” The testers can quickly pinpoint and solve issues in copper and fiber-optic cabling, Ideal Networks noted, adding, “Assisting the technician is a large built-in screen that displays useful information including test summaries and at-a-glance network snapshots.”

“Our NaviTEK NT was developed to respond to the real challenges that technicians and installers face when conducting network testing,” said Dan Payerle, business unit manager with Ideal Networks. “It is not only compact, flexible and functional for a range of needs, but it can be easily connected to a network using copper or fiber interfaces-adding to its versatility and value. With one push of a button it can detect services such as ISDN, POTS and PoE, plus perform wiremapping including length measurement.”

The tester is 6.9x3.1x1.6 inches in dimension “so it easily fits into tight spaces where network cabling is often located,” Ideal Networks said. “Previously, laptops and other types of bulky computer systems were used to troubleshoot networks, yet both take up valuable working space in already-cramped connection points. Laptops also create the need for extra cables, which contribute to an uncomfortable and potentially dangerous workplace. Not so with the NaviTEK NT.”

Payerle added, “This tester provides technicians with a convenient and more-efficient alternative to network troubleshooting using a laptop, as well as a faster way of detecting link and IP information.” The NaviTEK NT testers also feature autotest capability for convenient initial testing, Netscan to display all IP and MAC addresses on the user’s network, and Network Probe to provide a visual illustration of the user’s network.

“Once tests are complete, results can be downloaded from the NaviTEK NT to an Android or Apple mobile device via the free Ideal AnyWARE wireless app,” Ideal Networks said. “Technicians can share finished PDF reports with colleagues and clients without ever having to involve a laptop or computer.”

AFL gains more patents for OCA optical connectivity products

Global fiber optics manufacturer and service provider AFL was recently awarded three new U.S. patents for technologies used in the enhancement of the company’s Optical Connectivity and Apparatus (OCA) products.

Ted Lichoulas, engineering manager; Roger Vaughn, product technology manager; and Wink Courchaine, senior engineer received a patent for an Optical Fiber Event Sensor that allows continuous monitoring of network assets such as fiber distribution cabinets. The sensor creates an event by inducing a set amount of attenuation when compressed or released depending on the application, as in opening and closing a door. A single fiber is looped through all of the sensors in series so that multiple assets can be monitored. An optical monitoring device (OTDR) connected to the fiber then scans for these attenuation events and alerts an operator when and where they occur.

Rich Cubala, OSP product specialist and Craig Henderson, regional sales manager, secured a patent for a splice tray rail system. Responding to market demand for better organization of splice trays, the duo of Cubala and Henderson implemented a rail system that allows for easier access. The trays are attached to a rail connector plate that allows the splice trays to be moved easily from the stack and over the rails to access an individual tray without disturbing other trays and splices.

Finally, Kheng Seng, director of supply chain for OCA, received a patent for a secured fiber-optic connecting system and method using offset fiber position in a single-fiber connector. The combination of the fiber’s offset distance from the ferrule’s longitudinal center axis and its angular offset relative to a key on the connector housing provides a unique position achieving secured mating for a pair of connectors.

Fiber Optic Center adds technical glossary as latest free industry resource

Fiber Optic Center, Inc., (FOC) announced a new industry technical glossary as the latest in a series of resources rolled out in the past year to better serve FOC customers and industry. Building on the company’s recent rollout of technical articles, blogs, AskFOC, video demos, helpful tips series, monthly e-news subscriptions, live consulting, and partnership with Wayne Kachmar’s Technical Horsepower Consulting, the FOC Glossary has been added to the company’s website. The glossary includes sections for acronyms and military specifications for connectors in addition to the general terms and definition sections. The glossary’s intent is to make it easier for technicians to both reference and understand common industry terms and definitions, as well as to encourage a dialog with the industry. Launched containing more than 3,600 entries on fiber, cable, wire, optics, assemblies, connectors, electrical, data communications and testing terms, as well as the FOC ancillary expert areas of polymers, chemicals, lapping film, adhesives and epoxies, the FOC Glossary also includes an additional 2,000+ FOC acronym entries and a core 18 MIL-SPEC definitions for connectors.

FOC plans to expand this latest resource with more standards, processes, edits, and additions that can be requested through the email [email protected].

R&M founds R&M USA, appoints Markus Huber president

As of May 1, R&M USA is operational and Markus Huber is the organization’s president.

Switzerland-based R&M-Reichle & De-Massari AG-acquired Milpitas, California-based REAL Communications Group in February. R&M said the integration of fiber-optic technology specialist REALM “is progressing and will from now on operate under the name R&M USA Inc.”

“Founded in 1987, REALM is a leader in developing and supplying advanced fiber management products for data center, wireless antenna systems, enterprise networks and the Silicon Valley’s OEMs,” R&M added.

Huber will lead R&M’s North American operation. He has held senior management positions including sales director for a large system integrator, and managing director of a Swiss-based distributor. Since joining R&M, Huber founded and managed R&M Far East with its subsidiaries in Asia-Pacific. Most recently he led the global customer project management group at the company’s headquarters in Switzerland.

Huber commented, “The founding of R&M USA offers us direct access to the world’s most important network cabling market. I am very excited about the new opportunities this brings, especially in the strongly growing North American data center market. Our company can now serve customers on each continent with high-end network solutions for both LAN and data center markets.”

SkillsUSA crowns telecommunications cabling champions

The Electronics Technicians Association (ETA) International recently announced results and issued congratulations to winners of the Telecommunications Cabling Championship, which was held as part of the SkillsUSA Championships in Louisville, KY in late June. “Unique to SkillsUSA, the Telecommunications Cabling Championship utilizes many of the competencies and hands-on skills that make up ETA International’s Data Cabling Installer (DCI) and Customer Service Specialist (CSS) certifications,” ETA said. “The contests are planned by the Skills Technical Committee and designed to test the aptitude needed for successful entry-level performance in the field.”

ETA offered congratulations “to the tough competitors who vied for medals and awards in the Telecommunications Cabling contest, and especially to the six contestants who took home gold, silver and bronze medals for themselves and their schools.” Gold, silver and bronze medals were awarded at both the high-school and post-secondary levels. The winners are as follows.

High School - Gold: Nicholas Stemen, Waver Academy, Greensboro, NC; Silver: Bryan Urias, Orange Technical Education Centers, Orlando, FL; Bronze: Derek Faudree, Kiamichi Technology Center, Atoka, OK

Post-Secondary -Gold: Nakisha Carter, Indian Capital Technology Center, Muskogee, OK; Silver: Dustin Loya, College of Western Idaho, Nampa, ID; Bronze: Ashley Smith, Ozarks Technical Community College, Springfield, MO

Additionally, ETA announced that its student scholarship recipient to the International Wireless Communications Expo-Kelly Krenek-attended the SkillsUSA National Championship. Krenek attends A&M Consolidated High School in College Station, TX. She is the 2016 Skills Texas President and participated in the House of Delegates. She plans to compete in the 2017 championship.

ETA added, “Including the Telecommunications judges, support and contributors to the Telecommunications Cabling Championship come from departments of public instruction, community colleges, proprietary training groups, and companies such as ETA, Dymo, eITprep, Corning Optical Communications, CWA, Panduit, Fluke Networks, Cisco, Kobalt Tools, Light Brigade, Keysight Technologies, Southwire, Milwaukee Tools, Wiley Publishing, BICSI and Kentucky Community Technical College System-Elizabethtown.”

BICSI collaborating with Peruvian telecom training institution

BICSI recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Lima, Peru-based Instituto Nacional de Investigacion y Capacitacion de Telecomunicaciones de la Universidad Nacional de Ingenieria (INICTEL-UNI). INICTEL-UNI is a research and training institution whose purpose is to promote the development and use of telecommunications. The institution performs scientific, technological and innovation research and training.

When announcing the collaboration, BICSI said, “This MOU demonstrates the commitment of both organizations to further their goals through collaboration and information-sharing on events, education, marketing, and standards development.”

BICSI added, “The challenges facing the ICT [information and communications technology] community increasingly require programs and initiatives jointly developed by leading membership organizations. Collaboration from membership organizations that draws upon the expertise of ICT practitioners along with their respective community vendors will further promote best practices, spur technology innovation, and enhance the overall growth of the ICT community globally. Collaboration in training and sharing best practices will contribute to strengthening the ICT community.”

Brian Ensign, BICSI's president, commented, “This MOU with INICTEL-UNI will help in promoting a greater awareness of ICT standards and best practices around the world.”

Jose Oliden, INICTEL-UNI’s executive director, said, “INICTEL-UNI is very satisfied with the signing of the MOU because it has tended a direct bridge between the communities of information technologies and communications of the USA and Peru for mutual collaboration and initiation of programs and initiatives.”

Fluke expands LinkWare Live cloud-based network test capabilities

Fluke Networks has introduced additional LinkWare Live capabilities to help contractors, cable installers and project managers more effectively track and manage their network testers.

The LinkWare Live platform, announced by Fluke Networks late in 2014, is a cloud-based service that works with Fluke Networks Versiv testers, including the company’s DSX-5000 CableAnalyzer, OptiFiber Pro and CertiFiber Pro certification testers, allowing users to upload, manage and analyze complex certification test results from anywhere. The service’s new device management capability makes it easy for project managers to keep track of their testers and to confirm the status of device software and calibration from a single cloud-based screen. As a result, project managers, cable installers and contractors can improve on-time project completion and efficiency.

“Our service center regularly fields frantic calls from customers who failed to notice their calibration period was about to expire on their testers. They call to request expedited service or updates for their devices to use for projects on deadline,” observes Adrian Young, product marketing engineer with Fluke. “The worst calls are from contractors who have had their test results rejected because the testers were past their calibration date, requiring them to retest part or all of the job. LinkWare Live’s notification feature will help contractors avoid these scenarios.”

The new LinkWare Live device tracking and management capability is based on Google WiFi location services. In addition to tracking device locations, LinkWare Live helps contractors plan to have testers updated and calibrated as required, making sure everything is ready to go for each project. The device tracking and management capability will be available only in the United States initially, with additional countries to be released in the coming months.

To ensure results are accepted by customers and manufacturers, testers must be in calibration and running the latest test limits.

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