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Cabling: The Complete Guide to Copper and Fiber-Optic Networking, Fourth Edition by Bill Woodward, Andrew Oliviero

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Chapter 20. Basic Principles of Light

Even the simplest fiber-optic link is a triumph of innovative design, manufacturing precision, and technical creativity. One of the factors contributing to the high data rates and long transmission distances of fiber optics is knowledge of the principles of light. While the optical fiber is the transmission medium, light is the carrier on which the signals are imposed. Its small wavelengths and high transmission velocity make possible bandwidths that would be unimaginable using other forms of transmission. To get the best performance from every part of the fiber-optic link, you must understand the characteristics of light and the factors within the fiber-optic link that affect it.

This chapter describes the ...

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