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Fiber-optic communication

fiber-opticfiber-optic networkfiber optic communication
Optical fibers are used most often as a means to transmit light between the two ends of the fiber and find wide usage in fiber-optic communications, where they permit transmission over longer distances and at higher bandwidths (data rates) than electrical cables.
Fiber-optic communication is a method of transmitting information from one place to another by sending pulses of light through an optical fiber.

Glass

silicate glassvitreousglassmaker
An optical fiber is a flexible, transparent fiber made by drawing glass (silica) or plastic to a diameter slightly thicker than that of a human hair.
Glass will transmit, reflect and refract light; these qualities can be enhanced by cutting and polishing to make optical lenses, prisms, fine glassware, and optical fibers for high speed data transmission by light.

Fiberscope

flexible fiberoptic bronchoscopesnake camerafiber-optic cameras
Fibers are also used for illumination and imaging, and are often wrapped in bundles so they may be used to carry light into, or images out of confined spaces, as in the case of a fiberscope.
A fiberscope is a flexible optical fiber bundle with an eyepiece on one end and a lens on the other that is used to examine and inspect small, difficult-to-reach places such as the insides of machines, locks, and the human body.

Fiber optic sensor

Fiber optic sensingfiber-optic sensorfiber optic sensors
Specially designed fibers are also used for a variety of other applications, some of them being fiber optic sensors and fiber lasers.
A fiber optic sensor is a sensor that uses optical fiber either as the sensing element ("intrinsic sensors"), or as a means of relaying signals from a remote sensor to the electronics that process the signals ("extrinsic sensors").

Fiber laser

fibre laserFiber lasersfiber-laser
Specially designed fibers are also used for a variety of other applications, some of them being fiber optic sensors and fiber lasers.
A fiber laser or fibre laser is a laser in which the active gain medium is an optical fiber doped with rare-earth elements such as erbium, ytterbium, neodymium, dysprosium, praseodymium, thulium and holmium.

Core (optical fiber)

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Optical fibers typically include a core surrounded by a transparent cladding material with a lower index of refraction.
The core of a conventional optical fiber is a cylinder of glass or plastic that runs along the fiber's length.

Multi-mode optical fiber

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Fibers that support many propagation paths or transverse modes are called multi-mode fibers, while those that support a single mode are called single-mode fibers (SMF).
Multi-mode optical fiber is a type of optical fiber mostly used for communication over short distances, such as within a building or on a campus.

Cladding (fiber optics)

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Optical fibers typically include a core surrounded by a transparent cladding material with a lower index of refraction.
Cladding in optical fibers is one or more layers of materials of lower refractive index, in intimate contact with a core material of higher refractive index.

Waveguide

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Light is kept in the core by the phenomenon of total internal reflection which causes the fiber to act as a waveguide.
The frequency of the transmitted wave also dictates the shape of a waveguide: an optical fiber guiding high-frequency light will not guide microwaves of a much lower frequency.

Single-mode optical fiber

single-mode fibersingle-modeSMF
Fibers that support many propagation paths or transverse modes are called multi-mode fibers, while those that support a single mode are called single-mode fibers (SMF).
In fiber-optic communication, a single-mode optical fiber (SMF) is an optical fiber designed to carry light only directly down the fiber - the transverse mode.

Optical fiber connector

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Temporary or semi-permanent connections are made by means of specialized optical fiber connectors.
An optical fiber connector terminates the end of an optical fiber, and enables quicker connection and disconnection than splicing.

Fusion splicing

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For applications that demand a permanent connection a fusion splice is common.
Fusion splicing is the act of joining two optical fibers end-to-end using heat.

Cleave (fiber)

cleavingfiber cleaving
This is more complex than joining electrical wire or cable and involves careful cleaving of the fibers, precise alignment of the fiber cores, and the coupling of these aligned cores.
A cleave in an optical fiber is a deliberate, controlled break, intended to create a perfectly flat endface, perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the fiber.

Charles K. Kao

Charles KaoSir Charles KaoCharles Kuen Kao
Charles K. Kao and George A. Hockham of the British company Standard Telephones and Cables (STC) were the first, in 1965, to promote the idea that the attenuation in optical fibers could be reduced below 20 decibels per kilometer (dB/km), making fibers a practical communication medium.
Sir Charles Kuen Kao (4 November 1933 – 23 September 2018) was a physicist and electrical engineer who pioneered the development and use of fibre optics in telecommunications.

Attenuation

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Charles K. Kao and George A. Hockham of the British company Standard Telephones and Cables (STC) were the first, in 1965, to promote the idea that the attenuation in optical fibers could be reduced below 20 decibels per kilometer (dB/km), making fibers a practical communication medium. Fibers are used instead of metal wires because signals travel along them with less loss; in addition, fibers are immune to electromagnetic interference, a problem from which metal wires suffer excessively.
In electrical engineering and telecommunications, attenuation affects the propagation of waves and signals in electrical circuits, in optical fibers, and in air.

Transverse mode

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Fibers that support many propagation paths or transverse modes are called multi-mode fibers, while those that support a single mode are called single-mode fibers (SMF).
Transverse modes occur in radio waves and microwaves confined to a waveguide, and also in light waves in an optical fiber and in a laser's optical resonator.

Donald Keck

Donald B. Keck
The crucial attenuation limit of 20 dB/km was first achieved in 1970 by researchers Robert D. Maurer, Donald Keck, Peter C. Schultz, and Frank Zimar working for American glass maker Corning Glass Works.
Donald B. Keck (born January 2, 1941) is an American research physicist and engineer most noted for his involvement in developing low-loss optical fiber.

Narinder Singh Kapany

The field of applied science and engineering concerned with the design and application of optical fibers is known as fiber optics. The term was coined by Indian physicist Narinder Singh Kapany, who is widely acknowledged as the father of fiber optics.
Narinder Singh Kapany (born 31 October 1926) is an Indian-born American physicist known for his work in fibre optics.

Robert D. Maurer

The crucial attenuation limit of 20 dB/km was first achieved in 1970 by researchers Robert D. Maurer, Donald Keck, Peter C. Schultz, and Frank Zimar working for American glass maker Corning Glass Works.
Dr. Robert D. Maurer (born July 20, 1924) is an American industrial physicist noted for his leadership in the invention of optical fiber.

Mechanical splice

mechanical splicingsplicing
Another common technique is a mechanical splice, where the ends of the fibers are held in contact by mechanical force.
A mechanical splice is a junction of two or more optical fibers that are aligned and held in place by a self-contained assembly (usually the size of a large carpenter's nail).

Peter C. Schultz

Peter Schultz
The crucial attenuation limit of 20 dB/km was first achieved in 1970 by researchers Robert D. Maurer, Donald Keck, Peter C. Schultz, and Frank Zimar working for American glass maker Corning Glass Works.
Peter C. Schultz, Ph.D. (born 1942), is co-inventor of the fiber optics now used worldwide for telecommunications.

Standard Telephones and Cables

STCStandard Telefon og KabelfabrikStandard Telephones & Cables
Charles K. Kao and George A. Hockham of the British company Standard Telephones and Cables (STC) were the first, in 1965, to promote the idea that the attenuation in optical fibers could be reduced below 20 decibels per kilometer (dB/km), making fibers a practical communication medium.
During its history, STC invented and developed several groundbreaking new technologies including pulse code modulation (PCM) and optical fibres.

Heinrich Lamm

In the 1930s, Heinrich Lamm showed that one could transmit images through a bundle of unclad optical fibers and used it for internal medical examinations, but his work was largely forgotten.
Heinrich Lamm (January 19, 1908 – July 12, 1974), a Jewish German-American physician, was a pioneer in using optical fibers for image transmission, and was the first to make a fiber-optic endoscope.

Photonic-crystal fiber

photonic crystal fiberphotonic crystal fibersPhotonic Crystal Fibre
The emerging field of photonic crystals led to the development in 1991 of photonic-crystal fiber, which guides light by diffraction from a periodic structure, rather than by total internal reflection.
Photonic-crystal fiber (PCF) is a class of optical fiber based on the properties of photonic crystals.

Thomas Mensah

Mensah, Thomas
Chemical engineer Thomas Mensah joined Corning in 1983 and increased the speed of manufacture to over 50 meters per second, making optical fiber cables cheaper than traditional copper ones.
His works are in fields relating to the development of fiber optics and nanotechnology.