This week in San Diego, California is the OFC Conference, said to be the largest global conference focusing on optical communications and networking and the pros that lead the industry. One such professional is Mei Wen, Senior Development Engineer at OFS Optics.
Q&A With Mei Wen, Senior Development Engineer at OFS Optics
Wen’s expertise at the OFS Optics centers on specialty fibers that allow for more control of the soldering process, so naturally, we wanted to know more about these fibers and how they impact smaller packages.
Accumold: Engineers can assume, but what is the biggest challenge high temperatures pose to traditional optical fibers?
Mei Wen: Fiber reliability under high temperatures is the biggest challenge for traditional optical fibers. Traditional optical fibers typically have a recommended temperature range of -60 to 85°C. The reliability of traditional fibers is well studied within that temperature range. Under high temperatures, fiber coating performance and fiber mechanical properties degrade thus adversely affecting fiber reliability. Fiber reliability under high temperatures has not been well studied so far. This is why OFS develops and manufactures high-temperature fibers and studies their reliability under high temperature.
Accumold: As technology becomes much smaller, do you see temperature resistant OFS cables being used in microtechnologies?
Mei Wen: Yes. As the demand for smaller devices and components increases, fibers are integrated into tighter opto-electronic systems. In such applications, the traditional fabrication process of reflow soldering is used. Typically, fibers are exposed to the maximum temperature of 260°C for a short period of time during the reflow soldering process. Additionally, the environmental temperature in these systems typically gets higher when devices become smaller and more compact. For this reason, we believe OFS temperature-resistant fibers will be well-suited for use in photonic integrated chips.
Accumold: What are a few high-temperature use cases that are made possible by your optics cables that may not be top of mind?
In addition to photonic integrated chips, we foresee OFS high-temperature fibers and cables being used in such applications as oil and gas down-hole well monitoring and aerospace flight components.
Check Out This Video From OFS
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