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Fiber Optic Reference Guide, 3rd Edition by David Goff

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2 Fiber Optic Fundamentals

 

The Nature of Light

In order to understand some of the more complex components used in modern, high-performance, fiber optic transmission systems, one should have a good understanding of the nature of light. Many of light's properties are not obvious in our everyday lives, yet these properties are vital to the success of many modern fiber optic components. An important characteristic of light is the fact that light acts like a wave. (It can also act like a particle, but that is not pertinent to this discussion.) Light travels as an oscillating wave of electric and magnetic fields. As a result, two phenomena affect the behavior of light: interference and polarization, both important fundamentals in understanding and ...

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