The light sent via the fiber-optic cable corresponds to an electromagnetic wave with a frequency of 1014 to 1015 Hz. The wavelength of visible light is about 0.4 mm, so each fiber can carry up to 4000 bits per second.
Fiber optics use the same technology as glass fibers, except that they are made from plastic instead of glass. Plastic fibers are flexible and can be woven into fabrics or wrapped around rods to create low-cost cables. Fiber-optic signals are carried by photons which travel through the fiber optic cable unharmed. When the fiber reaches its destination it is reconnected to another piece of fiber optic cable. The only mechanical part of the system is an optical connector which mates two fibers together.
Optical fibers can transmit data faster than metal wires (10 gigabits per second vs 200 megabits per second for copper wires), and they are less likely to be damaged by heat or electricity. These advantages make fiber-optic cables the transmission medium of choice for Internet connectivity and other high-speed applications.
In addition to transmitting data, fiber optics can also be used to send sound and images. This property makes fiber optics useful for telecommunications systems such as telephone lines and television cable networks.
The signal source in fiber optics is waves. These waves can be generated by any number of methods, but they must be mechanical or electrical for fiber to work. The two main types of signals used with fiber optics are light and sound.
Fiber optic cables carry information encoded in the form of light pulses from a source, such as a computer, laser, or other light-emitting device, to a destination, where it is received and decoded into an electronic signal by a photoelectric cell or other light detector. Fiber optics transmit data quickly over long distances without loss of intensity, so they are commonly used as transmission lines for computers. Fiber optics can also be used to connect pieces of equipment that would not be able to communicate otherwise, such as radio telescopes separated by large distances.
Sound waves in fiber optics travel along the fiber's core, just like light does. However, since sound waves are mechanical vibrations, they must be mechanical or electromagnetic for fiber to work. This means that fiber cannot directly transmit electricity, only signals created by a current flowing across a conductor. A magnetic field can induce currents in a fiber's core, but these fibers are called magnetically-induced acoustic fibers, or MIAFs.
The light source is pulsed on and off, and a light-sensitive receiver at the other end of the wire translates the pulses back to the original signal's digital ones and zeros. Even laser light passing through a fiber optic cable loses intensity due to dispersion and scattering of the light within the cable itself. However, because optical fibers do not disperse or scatter light that is transmitted along their length, lasers can be used to transmit data along fiber-optic cables.
Fiber optics allow for much longer distances between the source and destination than electrical wires, allowing for transmission over greater distances. Fiber-optic cables also allow for more flexible connections as they can be bent without causing damage to the cable. Such cables are commonly used by telecommunications companies to connect cities together. A city may have many fiber-optic cables running into it from neighboring cities; these are called "branches" or "leaves". Each branch connects to a node, which in turn connects to another node in another city. All the nodes are connected together by trunk lines which run into the first city before starting again from different parts of it.
Lasers were originally developed for use with radar systems, but they are now found in many other products as well. They are used to read bar codes, CDs, DVDs, etc. ; play video games; illuminate billboards; and so on. Laser pointers find application in teaching tools and in entertainment devices such as laser pointers and flashlights.
The signal transported over optical fiber is changed from an electrical signal into light and then back into an electrical signal at the receiving end. Data can be transferred in the form of audio, video, or telemetry data across long distances or via local area networks. The transmitting device converts the electrical signal into an optical signal by modulating an LED or other optical source with the data to be transmitted. The modulated light is transmitted through the fiber optic cable to a receiver which reconverts the signal back into an electrical format for processing further. Fiber optics are used instead of copper because they can carry much greater amounts of traffic over longer distances without repeaters being needed.
Optical fibers are bundles of glass filaments surrounded by protective layers. Optical fibers can be thin as a strand of hair or as thick as a railroad track pipe. They can be made of pure silica or mixed with other materials such as zinc oxide or germanium dioxide. An illustration of how optical fibers work is provided by looking down a hallway. If you were to walk down this hall and wave your hand in front of your face, you would see an image of yourself because light waves are reflected back to the source by objects that touch the surface of the skin. But if you had a fiber-optic camera strapped to your hand, the image of yourself that it would record when you waved your hand in front of it would look different than what you saw with your own eyes.
Fiber optics, often known as optical fibers, are long, thin strands of meticulously drawn glass the size of a human hair. These strands are bundled together to form optical cables. As a result, the optical fiber sends "data" as light to a receiving end, where the light signal is decoded as data. Fiber optics were originally used by the military for communication and navigation purposes. Today, they are also used in telecommunications systems, computer networks, and consumer devices such as webcams and remote controls.
Optical fibers were invented by Felix Wankel in 1956; however, they weren't commercially successful at first. It wasn't until the 1990s that they became more widespread within industry and research labs. Today, optical fibers are used in nearly all types of communications technology, from telephone lines to cable TV to internet connections.
The data carried by fiber-optic cables can be quite large. A typical single-mode fiber can carry up to 2,400 megabits per second (Mbps), while a multimode fiber can carry up to 1,200 Mbps. The data is encoded into patterns of lights and dark regions on the fiber's surface called "modulations." These modulations can represent binary digits (bits) that make up words, numbers, and symbols. They can also represent audio, video, or other forms of data.
In order for an optical fiber to function as a transmission medium, it must be able to transmit data without corrupting it.