Fiber Optic Communication

What is Fiber Optic Communication?

The technology of transmitting data and information from one place to another by converting light signal into electrical signal through the media of an optical fiber is called Fiber Optic Communication. In order to transmit data, glass (or plastic) threads (fibers) are used. A fiber optic cable contains a bundle of glass threads. Each thread is capable to transmit messages modulated onto light waves.

Typically, fiber optics is a very “Green” technology in comparison to other semiconductor electronics. Because, it dissipates very little amount of energy than copper based cables. It also saves huge materials and reduces costs. One single strand of glass can carry equal amount of data carried by thousands of copper cables. It can do over a longer distance without using electronic equipment to reproduce it.

Core components of fiber optic communication system

Fiber optic communication system contains following components:
  • Semiconductor lasers, fiber lasers and optical modulators based Optical transmitters.
  • Photo diodes based optical receivers.
  • Optical filters and couplers.
  • Dispersion compensating modules.
  • Optical fibers having improved properties regarding losses, guiding properties, dispersion and non linearity.
  • Semiconductor and fiber amplifiers to maintain sufficient signal powers over huge distances of fibers or as preamplifier before signal detection.
  • Multiplexers and optical switches. For example, optical add/drop multiplexers (OADMs) allow wavelength channels to be added or dropped in a wavelength division multiplexing (WDM ) system.
  • Optical switches are electrically controlled.
  • Signal regeneration device (electronic or optical re generators) and clock recovery.
  • Signal processing and monitoring electronics.
  • Computers and software to regulate the operation of the system.

Advantages of fiber optic 

Fiber optic has following advantages over traditional communications lines:
  • The bandwidth of fiber optic cables is higher than metal cables. As a result, they can carry huge amount of data and information.
  • In comparison to electrical cables, the weight of fiber-optic cables are light.
  • Fiber optic cables are less vulnerable than metal cables to interference. 
  • It is capable to achieve huge transmission rate. So, the cost per transported bit can be absolutely low.
  • Data is transmitted in digital system which is the natural form of computer rather than analog system.

Prospects of fiber optic communication :

Fiber optic communication is the most familiar technology for local area network (LAN). Already, this communication system has been used broadly within metropolitan areas (metro fiber links). Furthermore, telephone companies are gradually substituting conventional telephone lines with fiber optic cables. In future, almost all communication system will serve fiber optics. So, we can say that fiber optic communication system carries good prospects.



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