416 Optical Wavelength Converter

Optical Wavelength Converter

For fiber systems that require a fiber optic rotary joint (FORJ) having more than 52 fibers, an Optical Wavelength Converter (OWC) may be a practical alternative solution. Since optical fibers can carry multiple wavelengths simultaneously, this feature can be used to increase system data capacity and reduce the number of fibers required in a FORJ or umbilical cable, particularly when existing systems are upgraded or new systems require capacity for future expansion. Most optical data links use only 1 or 2 common wavelengths, so by using optical wavelength conversion, many independent links can be combined on a single fiber, freeing up fibers for additional channels.

The Focal Model 416 OWC is a 3U Eurocard rack with dual redundant power supplies and up to 12 separate wavelength converter cards, also known as optical-electrical converters (OEO). Each OEO card provides 8 wavelength converters to combine 8 fibers (4 in each direction) onto a single fiber, thus reducing the number of fibers required in a FORJ or umbilical by a factor of 8 to 1. A corresponding OEC rack on the other side of the FORJ converts the wavelengths back to their original optical format and number of fibers. Typical optical links, such as Ethernet, use one fiber for transit and one for receive, so each OEO card pair supports four such bidirectional Ethernet ports. The OWC also functions as a repeater, providing boosted optical outputs that effectively negate the optical loss of the FORJ.

OEO converters are configured with transceivers to support a range of data formats, data rates, wavelengths, and optical power levels that are compatible with the external devices. Each card can be factory configured to match the types of optical signal inputs/outputs required, e.g. Fast Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet, ATM, HD SDI, etc. Cards are available for both multimode and singlemode inputs, and since the OEO cards are unpluggable, they are easily replaced in the field to support changes to the system requirements. The modules are housed in either a flameproof enclosure (Ex d) for use in a hazardous area or in a stainless steel junction box for use in a safe area. Ingress protection is IP66.

All products can be modified to meet specific requirements. Please contact our engineering experts to assist with configuration of EOE converters to match your optical signals. Installation, commissioning and service is available.


  • Hazardous area certified / marine classification
  • IP66
  • Temperature: -20°C to +70°C


  • Temperature sensor / heater
  • Redundant power supply
  • Extended temperature range
  • IP68-20 m