What  Are Fiber-Optics

Fiber Optics is a technology that uses glass or plastic threads to transmit data.  Each of the thread is capable of transmitting messages modulated onto light waves. The light in the fiber optics travels by a process of internal reflection. The core medium of the cable is more reflective than the material surrounding the core. That causes the light to keep being reflected back into the core where it can continue to travel down the fiber. Fiber optic cables are used for transmitting voice, images and other data at close to the speed of light.

Parts of an optical fiber includes: Core, Cladding and the Coating which is there on the cable. The core is a thin glass center of the fiber where the light travels. The Cladding is the outer optical material surrounding the core that reflects the light back into the core and the buffer coating is a plastic coating which is used to protect the fiber from damage and moisture. The light travels through the core by constantly bouncing from the cladding which makes use of the concept of total internal reflection. The light wave can travel great distances as the cladding does not absorb any light from the core.

Instead of using electronic pulses to transmit information as the copper wires do, the fiber optics use light pulses to transmit information down fiber lines. Fiber optic cables also have a much greater bandwidth than metal cables i.e. they carry more data and are less susceptible than metal cables as these are much thinner and lighter than metal wires. Optical fibers come in two types: Single mode fibers and Multi-mode fibers.

Some more reasons why the fiber optics cable is used or the advantages which it provides are: The reliability and less down time which the copper based networks struggle to provide due to loose connections and corrosion. Other advantage is the high speed connections and these connections are not oversubscribed (due to which everybody on the network suffers because of slow down speed).

Fiber optics is a particularly popular in the case of LAN (Local Area Networks) and now the telephone companies are also replacing (while most of them have replaced it with optical fiber cables) the traditional lines with the fiber optic cables. Optical fiber cables will only be used in near future.

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