Simplex and Duplex Fiber Optic Cable

A fiber optic cable is a cable containing one or more optical fibers which are used to carry light. It’s one of the fastest growing transmission mediums for both cabling installations and upgrades, such as backbone, horizontal and desktop applications. It’s suitable to be applied in high-data-rate systems such as Gigabit Ethernet, multimedia, fiber channel and other network that requires large data transmission and high bandwidth over long distances. According to the different size of the core, a fiber optic cable can be divided into single mode cable and multi-mode cable. For these two types of cables, both could be simplex and duplex.

Simplex Operation

Simplex is just like “one-way street”. The network cable or communication channel can only send information in one direction. In today’s networking, it could be a good example of a person talking into a microphone and then hearing a voice from the speaker. Signal trasfers in only one direction from microphone to speaker. This way of transmission is called one-way transmission.

Duplex Operation

Meanwhile, most networks transfer data in two directions and are known as duplex communications links. “Duplex” comes from “duo” that means “two”, and “plex” that means “weave” or “fold”. Duplex has two kinds of communication systems: half-duplex and full-duplex. The half-duplex transmission is capable of sending a signal in both directions, but in only one direction not simultaneously. For example, the police car radio phones allows one person to talk at a time. Full-duplex allows signal transmission in both directions simultaneously. An example is a telephone IP service.

Simplex Fiber Optic Cable

Simplex fiber optic cable consists of a single strand of glass or plastic fiber, and has only one tight buffered optical fiber inside of the cable jacket. The simplex cable is used in applications that only require one-way data transfer, such as an interstate trucking scale that sends the weight of the truck to a monitoring station or an oil line monitor that sends data about oil flow to a central location. Simplex fiber optic cable is available in single mode and multi-mode. Single mode simplex fiber cable carries one ray of light at a time. So it’s good for long-distance transmission. It also has the advantages of high-carring capacity and low power consumption.

Duplex Fiber Optic Cable

Duplex fiber optic cable consists of two strands of glass or plastic fiber, having the jackets conjoined by a strip of jacket material, having zipcord, flat and round construction format. This duplex optic cable requires simultaneous and bi-directional data transfer. That means one fiber transmits data one direction; the other fiber transmits data in the opposite direction. Workstations, fiber switches and servers, fiber modems, and similar hardware need duplex fiber optic cable.

Simplex cable and duplex cable are available for single mode and multi-mode. They are compatible with any HDMI Extender. But duplex cable is more expensive than simplex cable because it uses more materials. These cables are used to realize indoor distribution, fiber patch cords and pigtails, equipment harnesses and internal connections.