Optical fiber is a type of dielectric (insulating) material, such as glass or plastic, capable of transporting light. High-speed data can be transmitted through optical fibers by total internal reflection of light. The biggest feature of optical fiber is that it transmits light signals instead of electrical signals. Currently available optical fibers have a data transmission rate of 100 Mbps to 2 gbps.
Optical fiber consists of three layers. Namely:
- Core: The innermost part is the core (core) which is made of glass or plastic. The inner core conducts light rays. The diameter of the core ranges from 8 to 100 micrometers.
- Cladding: The layer just outside the core is the cladding. The cladding is glass or plastic material that reflects light rays emitted from the core and sends them back.
- Jacket: The outer part is the jacket which acts as a cover for the cladding.
Structure of Optical Fiber
Multi-component glasses such as soda boro silicate, soda lime silicate, soda alumina silicate etc. are widely used for fiber production. Sometimes plastic is used as a fiber cladding.
Characteristics of Optical Fiber
Silica and multi-component glass are widely used as insulating materials in fiber construction. Currently, optical fiber is used as the medium of network backbone. The characteristics of this cable are as follows-
- Can transmit data at extremely high speeds.
- It transmits light signals instead of electrical signals.
- Ultra transparency.
- Chemical stability or inertness
- In optical fiber, data travels from source to destination by total internal reflection of light.
- Preventing wastage of energy.
- Easy processing capability.
- Fiber optic cables are mostly used as the backbone of the network.