Bending Loss is the attenuation of an optical signal that occurs when the fiber optic cable is bent around a small radius. This makes the waveguide bend, which causes the high-order modes of the waveguide to radiate outwards. As a result, the optical power dissipates as heat and is lost as the signal travels down the waveguide.
Bending Loss can be caused by both macrobending and microbending. Macrobending occurs when the fiber is bent in a way that creates large curvatures in the waveguide, causing the optical signal to suffer from large losses. Microbending, on the other hand, is caused by microscopic deformation of the waveguide due to environmental factors, such as temperature fluctuations or mechanical stress.
The amount of bending loss that occurs depends on the radius of curvature of the fiber, as well as the wavelength of the optical signal. Smaller radii of curvature result in larger losses, and shorter wavelengths cause larger losses. In addition, the material the fiber is made out of also affects the amount of bending loss that occurs. Harder materials, such as quartz, cause less bending loss than softer materials, such as plastic.
It is important to minimize bending loss, in order to ensure that the signal remains as strong as possible. This can be done through careful installation and regular maintenance of the fiber optic cable. Ensuring that the cable is not bent too sharply, and avoiding areas with extreme temperature or mechanical stress can help to reduce bending loss. In addition, the use of protective sheaths can also reduce the amount of bending loss.