The method for connecting two connectors that cannot intermate.
If the two ends of a coupler are different then it is usually referred to as an adapter.
Another meaning of coupler: an optical fibre device with one or more input fibre and one or several output fibres. Light from an input fibre can appear at one or more outputs, with the power distribution potentially depending on the wavelength and polarization. Such couplers can be fabricated in different ways, for example by thermally fusing fibre so that their cores get into intimate contact. If all involved fibres are singlemode (support only a single mode per polarization direction for a given wavelength), there are certain physical restrictions on the performance of the coupler. In particular, it is not possible to combine two or more inputs of the same optical frequency into one single-polarization output without significant excess losses. However, such a restriction does not occur for different input wavelengths: there are couplers which can combine two inputs at different wavelengths into one output without exhibiting significant losses. Such couplers are used e.g. in fibre amplifiers to combine the signal input and the pump wave. Other wavelength-sensitive couplers are used as multiplexers in wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) telecom systems to combine several input channels with different wavelengths, or to separate channels.
See also Adapter
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