Return Loss measures the amount of light reflected by a single discontinuity in a transmission line or optical fiber. The MS12 Return Loss Meter, part of the JGR’s MS12001 Cable Assembly Test System, uses a mandrel free approach based on optical time-domain reflectometry (OTDR) to measure the reflectance of connectors, cable assemblies or components.
In this application note, we describe the best practices to follow when using the MS12 to measure Return Loss.
Backreflection or Return Loss have been measured on components, connectors, patchcords and cables for years and remain one of the key parameters to measure indicating the percentage of light transmitted that is reflected by the device under test.
However, some confusion remains in the industry between backreflection and return loss, mostly due to misunderstanding of the difference between the two.