Fiber Optic telecommunication has transformed the way the internet works and it has become one of the most important technological inventions of the modern communication era. Fiber cables are capable of transmitting signals all across the globe at lightning-fast speeds. This speed is measured in terms of a unit called Optical Carrier Level.
An increasing number of businesses are keen to adopt fiber optical carriers to address their network communication requirements. In order to understand the buzz around this technology, it is important to know what fiber-optic communication is all about and how it can benefit your business requirements.
In the simplest of terms, fiber optic telecommunication works by transmitting information via a beam of light through glass pipe cable. These pipes are extremely thin strands known as optical fibers, hence the name – fiber optic communication.
The strands in every cable can range from two to several hundred in numbers. Even though they are one-tenth of the thickness of human hair, each of these strands is capable of transmitting nearly twenty-five thousand calls.
This type of communication works as light travels by bouncing off the walls of the pipe. Each particle of light, or photon, travels through the pipe in this manner wherein it repeatedly gets reflected back until it reaches its destination.
The construction of the pipe is such that the light does not escape but travels without any leakage in a phenomenon known as total internal reflection. Further, the structure of the pipe comprises two parts – the core is the center in which the light beam travels, and this is covered in an exterior layer known as ‘cladding’. With its lower ‘reflective index’ cladding is able to ensure that the light beam does not leak as it travels. This traveling is known as an electromagnetic carrier wave.
Optical transmitters help convert electrical signals into optical signals before they are transmitted through an optical carrier. This is how digital information created by computers or telephone systems can travel via fiber optic cables.
The mode of the cable is one of the determining factors for data transfer rates.
The core diameter of the cable is larger as compared to the wavelength of the light beam. As a result, a larger number of modes can be transmitted simultaneously.
The cores in a multi-mode cable typically range from 2 to 12. The number of cores is directly proportional to how much bandwidth the cable can carry.
In contrast, a single-mode fiber’s core reduces the wavelengths of the incoming light beam to just a few in number. As a result, only the primary mode can travel within the pipe.
This type also offers much lesser internal reflection thereby, reducing the attenuation through which data can be transferred over larger distances.
Fiber optic cables are capable of transmitting multiple types of information. The most common applications of fiber optic technology include broadcasting, computer networking, medical scanning, and military.
Out of these, fiber optic cables have gained maximum popularity in computer networking environments as they have enabled convenient long-distance information transfers.
This is mainly because optical carrier has successfully plugged in gaps left by the more traditional telecommunication network. They offer higher bandwidth with much lesser attenuation and practically no interference.
Fiber optic cable networks are cheaper to operate as well as maintain because information can travel almost 10 times further before requiring amplification.
Further, there is no electromagnetic interference that is so commonly felt in copper wire networks. Hence, the signal quality is better as well.
Lastly, fiber optic cables can carry a much higher amount of data as compared to copper cables of the same size.
DSL, or Digital Subscriber Line, networks run on copper wire cables. Copper wires must be carefully installed and regularly maintained to ensure that the network functions as per expectations.
In comparison to fiber optic cables, these copper wires can potentially emit electromagnetic currents which can cause interference and even damage the network severely.
While cable internet is capable of reaching download speeds of as much as 1000 Mbps, it is still much lower than the capability of an optical carrier. Moreover, it is a shared form of internet connectivity. Hundreds, if not thousands of locations, maybe connecting to a single node.
Fixed wireless connections are highly dependent on location and environmental conditions. Unlike fiber optic cable networks, fixed wireless connections reduce in speed as the distance increases.
Therefore, it is apparent that fiber optic telecommunication is certainly a game-changer as it is capable of overcoming the shortfalls of traditional network communications methods.
Let us explore some of the salient benefits of fiber optic networks that can add true value to the user.
Unlike older networks, fiber optic cables offer much higher bandwidths and connection speeds. Fiber optic cables are designed specifically to transmit data whereas, traditional copper wire connections were built for the purpose of transferring voice communication.
Moreover, the technology behind optical cables uses light beams that give it a clear speed advantage over other forms of telecommunication networks.
If your business requires regular transmission or storage of data on the cloud, then a fiber-optic network can offer not just speedier uploads but also cater to large amounts of transfers. In contrast, a broadband connection can take up a substantial amount of time for uploading as well as downloading.
While optical carrier may offer fiber-optic connections with different speed plans, they all come with symmetrical connection speeds. This means that the upload speed in your plan will be equal to the download speed.
Such symmetric connections are excellent at supporting voice applications like data center to data center connectivity, site-to-site data connections, VoIP and PBX phone services on the cloud.
Additionally, symmetric data connectivity can ensure that your staff does not spend time waiting for uploads to finish. This can also be helpful in the case of cloud backups.
Traditional copper wire cables have limitations when it comes to transmitting voice or data over longer distances. Fiber optic cables, on the other hand, offer a much lower rate of loss with respect to the signal power. As a result, the signal remains strong even over vast distances.
Another interesting benefit of fiber optic cable is that they are physically more durable allowing them to withstand severe climatic conditions. Even though they are thinner, fiber optic telecommunication cables are designed to last much longer than traditional cables.
In contrast, metal wiring is susceptible to environmental conditions like extreme heat and also pose a potential fire hazard if not installed properly.
Like many other technologies, fiber optic telecommunication also has a major drawback – cost. Even though the installation costs have dropped tremendously ever since it was introduced, they are still higher than copper cable networks.
Due to this, fiber optic connectivity is more widely available in metro cities and is more difficult to get in rural and remote areas. However, optical carrier demand is increasing in numbers year on year as most clients are demanding higher Internet speeds for efficient telecommunications and data networking requirements.
Even though fiber optic communication is a relatively newer technology, it is one of the building blocks of how future network communication will take shape.
Its efficiency, as well as high transmission capacity, have made this technology difficult to ignore. As the demands for higher bandwidth and faster internet speeds continue to increase, there is little doubt that fiber optic telecommunications and data networking services will not be extended in its reach.
If you are interested in finding out how your organization can benefit from fiber-optic services, then feel free to contact us at CarrierBid. You can also fill the form below and our experts can reach out to you for an initial consultation.