Category Archives: Fiber Optics

Powering Telecom Gear Using Energy Scavenging


I am seeing a lot of discussion in the electronic press about energy scavenging lately. I would argue that all the work I have done with powering fiber optic interfaces from solar power is part of that effort. There are … Continue reading

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Cost of Optical Fiber Versus Kite String


I try to help customers develop some perspective as to the cost of the deploying fiber optic cable. Each cable can carry multiple fibers (see Figure 1). Customers will frequently ask about the incremental cost of adding an additional fiber … Continue reading

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Sharks a Hazard For Submarine Cables


I have spent my share of time on a ship dealing with electronics being operated underwater — it is never easy or simple. It is easy to forget that there are creatures down there that also may want to cause … Continue reading

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Massive Bandwidth to Come From Wavelength Division Multiplexing and Coherent Communications


I was just reading an article on the FASTER project, which is a submarine cable project that will deliver an initial information capacity of 60 Terabits Per Second (Tbps) between the US and Asia. This is substantially more than the … Continue reading

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ITU 100 GHz Frequency Grid Math


Introduction A physicist in my group and I were having a discussion about how the wavelengths (i.e. colors) for lasers are specified by an international standard and I thought this discussion would provide a nice example of a differential approximation. … Continue reading

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The Biggest Ball Lens I have Ever Seen


We use tiny ball lenses all the time to mate our fibers up to photodetectors (Source). I was impressed when I saw a news article discussing an enormous, water-filled, ball lens being used to concentrate sunlight onto a solar array. … Continue reading

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More Bugs in My Optics


I had another optical failure related to bug intrusion. I do not yet understand how the bugs do it, but somehow they increase my optical loss enormously. This particular optical node was not properly sealed and box elder bugs got … Continue reading

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