Development and Future Prospect of Optical Fiber Technologies

Naoya UCHIDA  

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Electronics   Vol.E85-C   No.4   pp.868-880
Publication Date: 2002/04/01
Online ISSN: 
Print ISSN: 0916-8516
Type of Manuscript: INVITED PAPER (Special Issue on Optical Fibers and Devices)
optical fiber,  WDM transmission,  dispersion,  nonlinearity,  dispersion compensation,  

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This paper presents a historical review of fiber technologies from the 1970s till now, focused on design, transmission characteristics, and reliability assurance of silica optical fibers. Discussion is made by dividing the period into two phases; the first phase closing nearly at the end of the 1980s and the second one starting at the same time. As for the first phase, we present designs of graded-index multimode fiber and single-mode fiber, and development of dispersion shifted fiber. Mechanical reliability assurance and loss increase phenomena due to hydrogen are also described. Development of an optical fiber amplifier triggered the start of the second phase. Due to the introduction of WDM transmission systems as well as demand on high bit-rate transmission, fiber dispersion and nonlinearity have become indispensable factors to be taken into consideration for system design and performance evaluation. We discuss novel non-zero dispersion shifted fibers and dispersion compensating fibers, developed to meet the requirements for long distance and high bit-rate WDM transmission systems. Finally, discussions are made on the future research and development items, which are necessary to realize anticipating photonic networks.