A free online self-study course, available from The Fiber Optic Association as part of its Fiber U program, helps students learn how to properly use optical time-domain reflectometers (OTDRs).
Titled "Understanding OTDRs," the course include a free OTDR simulator that students can download for practice use. "Understanding OTDRs" is a four-part series that reviews fiber-optic testing, looks at how OTDRs work and how their test data is analyzed.
The course explains testing artifacts, such as "gainers" and "ghosts," which the FOA notes can be confusing to the OTDR operator. The program uses the OSP section of the FOA Online Reference Guide to Fiber Optics.