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The FOA Reference For Fiber Optics - Jargon

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The Fiber Optic Association, Inc. the non-profit professional society of fiber optics Reference Guide To
The Fiber Optic Association, Inc.
the non-profit professional society of fiber optics
Reference Guide To Fiber
Optics
Topic: Fiber Optic Network Optical Wavelength Transmission Bands Table of Contents: The FOA Reference Guide
Topic: Fiber Optic Network Optical
Wavelength Transmission Bands
Table of Contents: The FOA
Reference Guide To Fiber Optics

Fiber Optic Network Optical Wavelength Transmission Bands

As fiber optic networks have developed for longer distances, higher speeds and wavelength-division multiplexing (WDM), fibers have been used in new wavelength ranges, now called "bands," where fiber and transmission equipment can operate more efficiently. Singlemode fiber transmission began in the "O- band" just above the cutoff wavelength of the SM fiber developed to take advantage of the lower loss of the glass fiber at longer wavelengths and availablility of 1310 nm diode lasers. (Originally SM fibers were developed for 850 nm lasers where the fiber core was about half what it is for today's conventional SM fiber (5 microns as opposed to 8-9 microns at 1310 nm.) To take advantage of the lower loss at 1550 nm, fiber was developed for the C- band. As links became longer and fiber amplifiers began being used instead of optical-to-electronic-to-optical repeaters, the C-band became more important. With the advent of DWDM (dense wavelength-division multiplexing) which

allowed multiple signals to share a single fiber, use of this band was expanded. Development of new fiber amplifiers (Raman and thullium-doped) promise to expand DWDM upward to the L-band. Several low-cost versions of WDM are in use, generally referred to as Coarse WDM or CWDM. Most do not work over long distances so do not require amplification, broading the wavelength choice. The most popular is FTTH PON systems, sending signals downstream to users at 1490 nm and using low cost

1310 nm transmission upstream. Early PON systems also use 1550 downstream

for TV, but that is being replaced by IPTV on the downstream digital signal at

1490 nm. Other systems use a combination of S, C and L bands to carry signals

http://www.thefoa.org/tech/ref/basic/SMbands.html

5/18/2012

The FOA Reference For Fiber Optics - Jargon

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because of the lower attenuation of the fiber. Some systems even use lasers at 20 nm spacings over the complete range of 1260 to 1660 nm but only with low water peak fibers. Manufacturers have been able to make fiber with low-water peaks, opening up a new transmission band (E-band), but it has not yet proven useful except for CWDM. It is probably mostly useful as an extension of the O-band but few applications have been proposed and it is very energy-intensive for manufacture.

DWDM Band Wavelength Range Band Name O-band E-band Wavelengths 1260 – 1360 nm 1360 –
DWDM Band Wavelength Range
Band Name
O-band
E-band
Wavelengths
1260 – 1360
nm
1360 – 1460
nm
Description
Original band, PON upstream
Water peak band
S-
1460
PON downstream
band
1530
C-band
L-band
U-band
nm
1530 – 1565
nm
1565 – 1625
nm
1625 – 1675
nm
Lowest attenuation, original DWDM band, compatible with fiber
amplifiers, CATV
Low attenuation, expanded DWDM band

(C)2010, The Fiber Optic Association, Inc.

http://www.thefoa.org/tech/ref/basic/SMbands.html

5/18/2012