The increasing need for the Internet of Things (IoT) and the 5G revolution that is being so widely spoken about brings the exponential growth of interconnected devices and the need for reliable data transmission amongst users. The deployment of this digitally connected world relies on the fiber optic market, presenting it with several opportunities to make this 5G revolution real.
The rising broadband connections in the United States will play a key role in enhancing the growth of the optical fiber cable (OFC) sector. Nine out of ten American adults use the internet as per Pew Research Center, a non-profit organization based in Washington. The technological advancements in the telecom industry further fuel the need for optical fiber cable.
The various topics that optical fiber cablecovers are:
- What is an optical fiber cable?
- What are the advantages of optical fiber cables?
- Optical fiber cable market overview in the United States
- What are the different types of optical fiber cables?
- Difference between multimode and single-mode optical fiber cable
- What are the uses of optical fiber cable?
- Optical fiber cable FAQs
What is an optical fiber cable?
An optical fiber cable comprisesthin strands of plastic or glass called optical fibers. A cable can contain anywhere between two strands to a few hundred strands of the material. These OFCs transmit information using pulses of light. The light beam travels from one end of the optical fiber cable (OFC) to the other end. Once it emerges at the recipient’s end, a photoelectric cell converts the light pulse into electrical information comprehended by the computer.
The core or the middle of each strand is enclosed by a glass layer that reflects the light in when it hits this cladding. This prevents the loss of signal and enables the light to pass through all the bends in the cable. The internal reflection and cable structure keep the light within the cable, preventing any loss during transmission.
What are the advantages of optical fiber cables?
- When compared to copper cables, fibre optic cable offers substantially higher bandwidth.
- In comparison to other metal cables, it can transport a large amount of data.
- It's Economical and cost-effective, consuming less energy.
- With the reduced signal loss, it's durable and flexible.
What is creating a demand for Fiber Optic Cables in the United States?
1. To bring about an actual 5G revolution, optical fiber cables are necessary. This is because 5G is built on a small cell model, which brings connectivity to the doorstep of the end-use. A significant optical fiber cable backbone needs to be in place for a cohesive internet delivery experience for this small cell model to sustain.
2. There is a significant growth in data transmission due to the increasing demand of Internet for the Things (IoT) and the rising number of connected devices resulting in the need for a robust optic fiber market.
3. Fiber to the Home (FTTH) and Fiber to the Building (FTTB) are a few of the most noteworthy broadband networking designs that require wide-scale distribution of optical fiber cables. Copper cables cannot provide the security that OFCs offer.
4. As internet users grow, so does the need for increased bandwidth – a healthy communication infrastructure needs to be in place to handle the vast volumes of data being delivered effectively across the world. OFCs transfer information with the help of light at an increased frequency and speed. Apart from increasing the bandwidth capabilities, OFCs offer better quality videos and pictures.
What are the various types of optical fiber cables?
The optical fiber cable classification depends on three factors – the refractive index, materials it is made up of, and the mode used to propagate light.
The refractive index OFC classification is of two types:
- Step Index Fibre: This comprises a core surrounded by the cladding, with a single uniform refractive index.
- Graded Index Fibers: In this case, the refractive index of the OFC goes down as the radial distance from the fiber axis rises.
The material classification of OFC is of 2 types:
- Plastic Optical Fibers: In this OFC, the poly (methyl methacrylate) is used as the core material to transmit light.
- Glass Fibers:This type of cable is made up of extremely fine glass fibers.
The mode of propagation of light classification is of two types:
- Single-Mode Fibers: These are preferred for transmitting signals over long-distances
- Multimode Fibers:These are used to transmit signals over short distances.
How does the multimode optical fiber cable differ from the single-mode?
A single-mode optical fiber cable enables a single type of light mode to be proliferated at a time. However, in a multimode optical fiber cable, multiple light modes can be propagated. The core diameter of a single-mode OFC is around 9 µm which is significantly smaller than the diameter of the multimode fiber which is 50 µm and 62.5 µm. As a result, the multimode fiber has a higher light-gathering ability and simplified connections.
What is uses of optical fiber cable?
Optical Fiber cables provide a significantly higher speed, security and bandwidth potential as compared to their copper counterpart. Due to technological development and a growing number of applications, the optical fiber cable market is bound to grow. With 5G coming to life, a strong foundation in optic fibers is mandatory to ensure the 5G success.
Optical Fiber cables can transmit more data as compared to copper wires. They offer more flexibility, are lighter and less bulky.
Computers network with each other, within a building or across structures. With the help of optical fiber cables, the transfer is fast and easier.
OFCs are used to connect edge data centresand enable structured cabling within the data centres.
Armed forces and space applications
When it comes to aerospace or military applications, the security of data is of prime importance – here is where optical fiber cables provide the ideal secure solution as they are difficult to tap into.
Optical Fiber Cable (OFC) FAQs
Who invented fiber optics?
Charles Kuen Kao popularly known as the “father of fiber optic communications” as he discovered properties of glass in the 1960s. This discovery became the foundation for high-speed data transfer in today’s day and age.
What are the two types of optical fiber cables?
Single-mode and multimode optical fiber cables are the two types of optical fiber cables. As the name suggests, multimode optical fiber cables can carry multiple light rays, whereas single-mode can only carry one.
What equipment is needed for fiber optic Internet?
A fiber-ready router, also known as a ‘residential gateway’, is required for fibre optic internet.
How are optical fibers fabricated for communication?
The multi-step process starts with apreform fabrication – a magnified version of the actual fiber product. After this, there is fiber drawing, fiber coating, and spooling.
Why is silica used for the fabrication of optical fibers?
This is due to the properties of silica – good optical transparency and broad wavelength. Fibers can be drawn from silica at reasonably high temperatures, and they possess a broad glass transition.
What is the principle of optical fiber communication?
Optical fiber communication is based on the principle of total internal reflection, which means that light signals can be transmitted from one end to another without any loss.
What is the bandwidth of optical fiber?
Optical Fiber can support a bandwidth of up to 2,000 Mbps – to understand that speed.You can imagine a 2-hour HD movie being downloaded in 17 seconds.