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A fiber pigtail is a specific hardware connection used for cable termination. On a fiber pigtail, one end of the wire is simply exposed fiber and the other end has a pre-installed connector on it. Fiber pigtails are commonly spliced onto individual strands of a multi-fiber trunk cable.
One of the ideas behind fiber pigtails is that, by splicing the various wires of a multi-fiber trunk, network professionals can create a set of connections to end-point devices. These installations may also be connected to patch panels or used to achieve mounting where precision alignment of hardware components is important. Fiber pigtails may be used in the process of cable jetting, where communications engineers use modern methods to install cables in hard-to-reach areas.
Network experts maintain that the quality of the connectors is critically important with fiber pigtails because of their role in connecting systems. Network professionals look for standards on such things as insertion loss, termination quality and bend radius. Other specifications include the length of cables and the various standards that they meet for hardware systems.