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Home / Company / Company Profile / News / 2011 News / AFL Secures Patent for Optical Fiber Identifier

AFL Secures Patent for Optical Fiber Identifier


Spartanburg, SC – AFL, a global leader of fiber optic test equipment, announced that it was awarded a patent for "Signal Identifying Apparatus for an Optical Fiber," US Patent 7916983. This patent covers AFL's industry leading Optical Fiber Identifier (OFI) technology for detecting the presence or absence of an Optical Network Terminal (ONT) on FTTx fibers.

"AFL has a proven track record of leveraging the latest in technology to benefit our rapidly growing customer base," commented George Rose, Director for AFL's Noyes Test and Inspection division. This technology allows users to test Passive Optical Network (PON) fibers at an External Distribution Cabinet (EDC) without disconnecting fibers and disrupting services. This technology is now commercially available in AFL's OFI-FTTx fiber identifier.

The inventors of this technology are Mr. Jim Sanderson and Dr. Jianxun Fang, engineers at AFL's Noyes Test and Inspection Division. Jim Sanderson earned his BSEE and MSEE degrees from Virginia Tech and Dr. Fang earned his Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Texas A&M. The two inventors collaborated to solve the electronics and optics challenges of testing without disruption in PON networks.

"We are strongly focused on understanding and addressing our customers' needs. The OFI-FTTx was developed in response to our customers' need to test live PON Networks and identify and re-harvest dormant fibers without disrupting service," says Seán Adam, Director of Engineering for AFL's Noyes Test and Inspection Division. The patented OFI-FTTx technology – providing a tool to easily identify dormant fibers - is only part of AFL's PON testing strategy. AFL is committed to bringing innovation to PON testing with products including the OFI-FTTx and OFL280 FlexTester.

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About AFL
AFL provides industry-leading products and services to the electric utility, broadband, communications, OEM, enterprise, wireless and transit rail markets as well as the emerging markets of oil and gas, mining, nuclear, avionics, medical, renewable and intelligent grid. The company's diverse product portfolio includes fiber optic cable, transmission and substation accessories, outside plant equipment, connectors, fusion splicers, test equipment and training. AFL's service portfolio includes market-leading positions with the foremost telecommunications companies supporting both the central office and outside plant areas.

Founded in 1984, AFL is proud to offer engineering expertise, exceptional products and reliable service that help our customers improve their critical and electrical infrastructure. AFL has operations in the U.S., Mexico, Europe and Asia. The company is headquartered in Spartanburg, SC, and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fujikura Ltd. of Japan. For more information, visit


Corie Culp
Public Relations Manager