Introduction to Fiber Optic Cable Technology
Jerry Bednarczyk, P.E.
This course provides
an introduction to fiber optic cables, including details of common types of
fiber cables, their designs, the basics of their operation and how losses can
enter into the system operation. The course also provides information on fiber
optic connections and splices and how improper installation of the devices can
impact the signals.
This course includes a multiple-choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding of the course materials.
At the conclusion of this course, the student will:
The concept of transmitting information utilizing light is not a late 20th century development. Alexander Graham Bell demonstrated in 1880 that light could be used to transmit telephone signals. However, because of the lack of reliable light sources and low-loss transmission media, the "photo-phone" never achieved commercial success. Fiber optic cables were developed in the first half of the 20th century but the attenuation of the cables was too high to provide practical applications. It wasn't until the late 1960's that a fiber optic cable was developed where the attenuation dropped from over 1000 dB/km to less than 20 dB/km that made the commercialization of guided optical systems practical.
This course will
present a review of the various types of fiber optic cables, fiber optic terminations
and splices and the inherent problems.
The course content is in a PDF file Introduction to Fiber Optic Cable Technology. You need to open or download this document to study this course.
Unlike copper cables,
fiber optic cables can be used to transmit large volumes of data along a single
cable. Electrical signals are converted into light pulses which are then transmitted
along the fiber cable. Due to the advances made in fiber cable technology, thousands
of signals can be transmitted over hundreds of miles simultaneously with minimal
losses in signal strength. Multimode cables, while generally lower in cost,
have higher losses in signal strength as compared to single mode cables. Single
mode cables are usually used in installations that are very long and require
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Once you finish studying the above course content, you need to take a quiz to obtain the PDH credits.