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Easy Lecture: Understanding Optical Communication
Nov 16, 2018

Using optical network to send information to everyone around the world. Next, we introduce a technology that can transmit massive amounts of information one time at a time.

What is optical communication?

Optical communication is the technology that uses light to transmit information to the other side.

The basic structure of optical communication

Computers and cell phones around us send messages through electrical signals "0 and 1". Optical communication consists of a transmitter that converts electrical signals into optical signals, a receiver that converts optical signals into electrical signals, and a fiber loop that transmits light.

Advantages of optical communication


1) long transmission distance and economical energy saving

Assuming that 10 gigabytes of information (10 billion signals) are transmitted in a second, if electrical communication is used, the signal is adjusted every 100 meters. In contrast, the use of optical communication requires an adjustment interval of more than 100 kilometers. The fewer times the signal is adjusted, the fewer machines are used, so it is economical and energy-saving.


For example, talking to foreign friends or chatting on the Internet now feels like talking on the phone at home. Unlike before, the voice would lag behind. In the era of only electrical communication, the primary transmission distance is short and the amount of information transmitted is small. International communication is mainly transmitted by artificial satellite as a relay. However, with optical communications, one-time transmission of long distances and transmission of a large amount of information, so the use of fiber optic cables laid on the sea floor, you can achieve natural communication with overseas. The speed of radio and light is the same. However, the transmission path becomes longer and the signal arrives slower because of the satellite. The submarine cable is much shorter, so the signal will be faster.


2) massive transmission of information at one time.
A large number of users can receive the necessary information (film or news, etc.) at the same time. In one second, electrical communications can transmit up to 10 Gb (10 billion 0 and 1 signals) of information, compared with optical communications can transmit up to 1 Tb (1 trillion 0 and 1 signals) of information.


3) fast communication speed.

Electrical communication will be erroneous due to electrical noise, resulting in a decline in communication speed. However, optical communication is not affected by noise, so it can transmit signals quickly.

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