What You Should Know About Lab Evaluations

Lab evaluations are an essential component of the network development process. A well-designed and executed testing process ensures that any potential issues can be resolved prior to live network implementation. In this article, we will discuss why testing transceivers and other optical products is important, and some best practice tips to ensure you get the most out of your lab.

Why Testing Matters

Thorough testing of any new product before live deployment is critical to ensure continuity of service for your end users. Rather than risk disruption, you can use your lab to verify that the product will perform properly and establish a performance baseline for future reference. For example, by simulating your production environment in a controlled setting, you will be able to identify potential compatibility issues and engage your vendor’s support team as soon as possible to resolve them. Testing also validates that the new product’s performance matches your required specifications.

Best Practice: Control Your Environment!

The most critical word in the previous paragraph is controlled. The simulated production environment you create in your lab must effectively be the “perfect-world” equivalent of your inside and outside plant environments. Therefore, all fiber cables used in your test must be measured precisely and free of any breakage caused by excessive bending. Cleanliness of fiber connectors is equally critical to ensure optimal test conditions (this article contains some additional tips for cleaning your optics). Lastly, pay particular attention to your link budgets, and use sufficient attenuation as needed. Once you’ve properly accounted for all these variables, it will make the troubleshooting process much simpler if or when challenges arise.

Champion ONE provides comprehensive engineering support throughout the evaluation process. For more information on evaluating our products in your lab, please contact us today.