In the world of cable networking, there are several types of pathways that will get your home computer or office computer to the World Wide Web. All roads lead to the internet but some take faster highways than others. Fibre-optic broadband connections are on the fastest route.
Fibre-optic technology took a giant step forward in the 1970s when Corning Glass and Bell Telephone independently created fibers from silica. The first non-experimental use of fibre-optics was in 1975 when the police department in Dorset, UK installed a telephone system using this new technology. From that time forward, the use of these hair-like fibres has found more and more applications for everyday use.
Fibre-optic cabling is made of pure glass. The fibres are as thin as a human hair and extremely flexible. This fibre acts as a kind of pipe that allows light to travel from one end o the fibre to the other. Fibre-optic broadband operates much like the fibre-optic lights that are made for decorating teenager’s bedrooms.
The advantages of using fibre-optics instead of metal wiring for accessing the internet or sending facsimiles over the phone lines is that there is less deterioration of the signal during transmission. This means that the data – whether typed or voice – is of a higher quality. Additionally, fiber-optic broadband internet is capable of transmitting a greater number of multiple signal sourcessimultaneously. Metal wires are subject to electromagnetic interference whereas fibre-optics is not.
Broadband is simply the dimension of how many bands of data can be moved over a transmission wire. The first broadband cables were made of copper, which transmitted data, by sound waves or radio waves. Fibre-optics use light waves. Many ISPs use fibre-optic broadband-a combination of both types of wiring configuration.
In the future, expect to see even broader uses for fibre-optics. Can batteries for automobiles be made from these optical fibres? Will these glass fibres be the basis for a new source of electric heating and lighting as well as data transmission? Only time will tell.
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