Cabling significantly affects end user quality of service and experience and so the more this technology is innovated, the greater potential there is for service improvement. While fibre optic is already regarded as the better option for higher speeds and a more uninterrupted service, recent developments could take existing achievements even further.
Fibre optic vs. traditional cabling – where are we now?
Fibre optic cabling is becoming increasingly widely used. It essentially uses light pulses to transmit information and is broadly acknowledged as being the best option where continuity of service and speed are key. Traditional cables send data via copper phone lines, which can present a range of issues, from interference through to degradation. The development of fibre optic cabling was viewed as a big breakthrough but it does have its limits. For example, storing information coming through fibre optic cables can only be done via the colour of the light or the nature of the wave, i.e. horizontal or vertical – until now.
New breakthroughs in fibre optic cabling
New research has revealed a fresh breakthrough in fibre optic cabling that has allowed scientists to twist light that is used to send information. The research was published in the journal Nature Communications and experts believe it could change the potential performance of fibre optic cabling for good. Essentially, the ability to twist light creates a third dimension via which information can be sent. The more angular momentum that can be employed, the more information the light stream can carry.
This is not the first time that researchers have been able to twist light. What’s groundbreaking is that this latest piece of research reveals that a new detector has been developed that is small and yet able to read the higher volume of information that is being transmitted via twisted light. Previous versions of detectors had to be as large as a dining table to be able to accommodate the increase in information being transferred. The new detector is very different and measures no more than the width of a human hair. As a result of this tech innovation it could be possible to create a chip able to detect twisting and to display it for mobile application. This is a huge step forward in fibre optic cabling and could make it even more effective and efficient than it currently is today.
The practical impact
While fibre optic cabling is already the fastest option when it comes to cables, this new development could make it even more impressive. In fact, it could make internet speeds up to 100 times faster than they are today, just by twisting the light streams involved. The research that has been done will potentially make it much easier to upgrade existing networks and also identifies how changes could make existing systems much more efficient.