A fiber optic cable is a glass or plastic fiber that carries light. These types of fibers are used instead of metal wires because the signals traveling along them experience much less loss and are immune to electromagnetic interference. This makes fiber optic cables the perfect solution for equipment located in high-voltage areas and places prone to lightening strikes. They are also ideal for places where explosive fumes are present to prevent the danger of ignition. The light travels down the center of the thin fiber by bouncing off the inside of the walls due to total internal reflection, just like the mirror effect that you see if you try to look at the outside world when submerged in a pool.
Optical fiber is ideal for communication and networking since it is very flexible and can be bound together like traditional cables, albeit much thinner cables. Communications fiber is almost always made out of glass and these types of fibers are wonderful for long-distance communications without interference.
Fiber optic technology has actually been around for nearly four decades and is being utilized in almost every industry today; communications, illumination, sensors and even fiber lasers – from medical applications, broadcast and telephone systems to security applications and more. It is also interesting to note that wiretapping of fiber cables is much more difficult than wiretapping of traditional electrical connections. There are even concentric dual core fibers that are claimed to be “tap-proof.”
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