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Certified Optical Network Associate

Categories: Fiber Optics, Networking
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About Course

The CONA course provides an introduction to optical networking and the types of systems that are in widespread commercial deployment. The course focuses on fibre optic networks that use either single channel per fibre, or multiple channels using CWDM and DWDM technology, providing typically up to 10 or 25Gb/s per channel and up to 80 channels per fibre. These may include metro networks, core networks, mobile backhaul, 5G backhaul, Fibre to the Antenna (FTTA) cell tower, Data Centre Interconnect (DCI), National Research and Education Networks (NREN), terrestrial Satcom links to and from Satellite earth stations, or dark fibre links and long haul systems that also use fibre amplifiers.


It is an ideal course for project teams to attend together as it promotes understanding of different roles in the process and the case study and assignment encourage discussion. This is a foundation course in optical networking, so there are no pre-requisites.


Key Outcomes
  • Design optical links that provide high capacity,typically up to 10 or 25Gb/s per channel and up to 80 channels per fibre
  • assess the quality of existing fibre infrastructure and its suitability for different systems
  • specify the components that are required to build a transmission link and describe how they should be configured
  • decide when and where optical amplifiers are needed and identify suitable products
  • design links for good performance and testability
  • determine the optical power budget of different transmission systems
  • calculate whether chromatic dispersion compensation is required for a link, and if so specify an appropriate DCM
  • calculate the optical loss budget for a transmission link
  • verify that a link design is viable in terms of power levels, chromatic dispersion limits and PMD levels
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What Will You Learn?

  • You will learn how to design, plan and implement cost-effective optical communications networks.
  • You will learn what is required for satisfactory system performance of these optical networks.
  • How the performance can be affected by the properties and the quality of the physical fibre infrastructure including such issues as attenuation, chromatic dispersion and polarisation mode dispersion (PMD).

Course Content

Introduction to fiber optics

Different gens, and role of standards

Introduction to CONA basics and kits and case study

Understanding and managing light and multiplexing

Infrastructure for optical fiber cables

Jointing and terminating external cables, connectors, and testing

Introduction to system performance and power levels

Optical amplifiers and transceivers

Chromatic dispersion management

Polarisation mode dispersion

Optical networking, photonic network topologies

Practical implementation, system testing and assessments