Connections, wires and connectors - Optical connections

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Optical connections are generally used for the transmission of digital signals. The scheme for this kind of connection includes a LED, an optical fibre and a photo-diode, as in the following diagram:

Connections, wires and connectors - Optical connection scheme

Optical connection scheme

The transmission of the signal (a beam of photons) takes place through the optical fibre which has a structure as shown in the following diagram:

Connections, wires and connectors - Propagation of photons within an optical fibre

Propagation of photons within an optical fibre

The optical fibre has an external coating called cladding and an internal structure called core. The difference between the two refraction indexes allows light (which is nothing but an electromagnetic wave at a certain frequency) to be reflected and propagate itself within the fibre.

Naturally not the whole wave gets reflected: part of it gets absorbed and introduces a signal degradation which increases as distance greatens. However, this absorption can be overlooked, seeing that it introduces a distortion level of merely 0.5 dB/Km.








  • posted on 02-03-2010 00:40
    Hello Marco, I was wondering: in the last paragraph it says "However, this absorption can be overlooked, seeing that it introduces a distortion level of merely 0.5 dB/Km". Do you mean "distortion" or "degradation"? Or do the two mean the same thing? Thank you, Your fellow sound engineer, Endy
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