Optical Fiber Communication

Optical Fiber Communication

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Science always keeps us on our toes. Science is a slow process but no one can deny its subsistence. Science is the mother of technology. Light has always been one of the fascinated topics to a physicist. Among all the areas of physics, light is the best-understood topic. Light is everywhere. Light has always held a mystique that inspires both scientists and artists alike.

Scientists have done a lot of research on the light. Last year Irish scientists observed a fundamental property of light. A team of Irish scientists observed a new form of light. This new form of light has shaken up our understanding of electromagnetic radiations. This new form of light can lead to faster and more secure optical fiber communication. Discovery of a new form of light can renovate optical fiber communication. This discovery can challenge the acquaintance of scientists about the properties of light. Irish scientists have invented a new form of light which don’t follow the existing laws of angular momentum.

The main characteristics of light are its color, wavelength and less proverbial property angular momentum. Angular momentum is the property of all the rotating objects. Angular momentum actually tells us about how much something can rotate. A beam of light travels just about in a straight line, but it can also rotate around its own axis. A light beam can rotate around its own axis while advancing on its path.  We can’t observe this rotation with the naked eyes. The rotation of light can be revealed by the interaction of the light beam with the matter. The angular momentum of light remains constant unless an external torque is applied.  A light beam can transfer its momentum to an absorbing object or a scattering object.

Kyle Ballantine and Professor Paul Eastham from Trinity College Dublin’s School of Physics and Professor John Donegan from CRANN observed a new form of light. According to Paul Eastham, he along with his research team wanted to find out how they can change the way the light behaves.  It was believed that angular momentum is an integer of Plank’s constant, where Plank constant is a physical constant that sets a scale for quantum effects. Angular momentum was thought to be fixed but a team of scientists observed that this fundamental property of light can be altered.  The angular momentum of each of photon is observed only half of previous existing value. Researchers observed a shift of one-half of Plank’s constant in angular momentum of each photon of light. Although this shift in angular momentum is diminutive but still is profound. During the research, a team of scientists predicted that angular momentum would be half-integer. For their research, they designed a device which can measure the flow of angular momentum in a beam of light. They passed the light through a crystal to create a beam of light, that had a warped and screw like structure and they observed a shift in the angular momentum of photons of light.This result was beyond their hope.

This discovery of new light has a great impact on optical fiber communication. For the world of Physics, this discovery of new form of light is a burst through. This invention has challenged the understanding of all the scientists about physics.

What I think is so exciting about this result is that even this fundamental property of light, that physicists have always thought were fixed, can be changed,” said lead researcher Paul Eastham.

This discovery of new form of light is really exciting not just only because it’s a brand new form of light, but because the 1980s, it was predicted that quantum mechanics would enable the possibility of those particles whose quantum numbers were fractions of the expected quantum numbers and discovery of new form of light proves those predictions. This theory is not only a breakthrough for the world of physics but also intact science.

Other than shaking up our understanding of light, this new discovery has the biggest impact that it could help in improving the speed of optical fiber communication as well as security along the optical fiber cables which lead to faster and more secure internet connections. These results have been in print in Science Advances.

 

By

Ms. Vandana Kaushik,

Assistant Professor,

SGT University Gurugram

 

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