Since the achievement by Corning of producing an optical waveguide having an attenuation of 20 dB/km in 1970, the technological progress in the area of optical communications has been rapid. Fiber properties have improved dramatically. Methods of splicing, coupling, and cabling have been developed. Input- output devices have demonstrated significant performance capabilities and have given indication of achieving long lifetimes. Several test installations are planned or are being evaluated around the world. Some aspects of performance still need to be proven but, nevertheless, there is little doubt as to the technical potential of optical waveguide communication.

© 1977 Optical Society of America

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