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15 September 1993 Space-environment effects on optical cables
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Results obtained from the Long-Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF) JPL fiber optics experiment, which remained in low-earth orbit for 5 3/4 years, are discussed in order to illustrate the effects of the adverse space environment on fiber optic cables. The results of tests performed on the ten fiber optic cable samples, flown on the LDEF, are then compared to data obtained from similar laboratory tests performed on currently available fiber optic cables. The effects of radiation exposure, temperature cycling, polymer aging, and micrometeoroid impacts on fiber optic cables applied in space are discussed. Overall, it seems that current commercially available fiber cables could be used for space missions, if kept in a controlled environment. Improvements in purity of silica glass, in buffer coatings, and in cabling materials are already visible in the new generation of fiber cables, bringing it one step closer to the ultimate `space qualified' fiber cable.
© (1993) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Ron Hartmayer, Shannon P. Jackson, and Alan R. Johnston "Space-environment effects on optical cables", Proc. SPIE 1953, Photonics for Space Environments, (15 September 1993);

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