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Fiber Optics: Understanding the Basics

The development and implementation of optical fiber has greatly impacted the communications space globally. In this article, we shall be discussing the basics of this fiber optics technology and how it works.

Components of Optical Fiber

Known as fiber optics or optical fiber, it can be made of glass or plastic. Its diameter is usually that of a human hair and could be a lot long. From one end to the other end, light is transmitted along the fiber with an optional imposed signal. Metallic conductors are not as quality as fiber optics. Bandwidth is one of the top advantages of fiber optics due to its capability to transmit a signal that contains a lot more information than a metallic conductor would. this is made possible because of the wavelength of light.

Other Advantages of Fiber Optics

- Freedom From EMI: EMI means electromagnetic interference. Fiber optics are invulnerable to EMI, and as such releases no radiation themselves to warrant other interference.

- Electrical Isolation: no grounding connection is needed with fiber optics since the transmitter and receiver are both isolated from each other. This makes them to become free of ground loop problems. One other very interesting thing is that you can expect no danger of sparks or electrical shock.

- Smaller and lighter: when compared with metallic conductors, fiber is not only smaller, but also weighs less and as a result requires less space.

- Low on power Loss: its low power loss allows for longer cable and fewer repeater amplifiers.


Below are some of the areas where fiber optics can be applied:

Communications: this refers to voice, data, video transmission, etc. they include:

- Telecommunications

- Local area networks (LANS)

- Industrial Control Systems

- Avionic Systems

- Military command, control, and communications systems

- Sensing: light can be delivered from a remote source to a detector through fiber optics to gain pressure, temperature, or special information. Another usage f the fiber is that it can be used as a transducer directly for the purpose of measuring some environmental effects which could be strain, electrical resistance, and pH.

- Lighting: areas that are difficult to reach can be reached with the help of a light source at one end of fibers bundled together.

- Power Delivery: fiber optics delivers power fast especially for such tasks as laser cutting, welding, marking, and drilling.

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