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Optoelectronics Circuits Manual, 2nd Edition by R MARSTON

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1

Basic principles

The word ‘optoelectronics’ is a recently devised one. It first came into general use during the 1970s as a catchy name that roughly describes the branch of electronics concerned with the practical application of modern optical (opto) devices. In this context, an ‘opto’ device can be broadly described as one that is designed to function somewhere within the visible or near-visible ‘light’ sections of the electromagnetic spectrum; in more scientific terms, it is one that operates within the approximate 10nm to 100µm (10 nanometre to 100 micrometre) wavelength section of the normal electromagnetic spectrum.

Figure 1.1 shows details of the electromagnetic spectrum, and Figure 1.2 shows the so-called ‘visible light’ part of the ...

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