Fiber optic network is a combination of both the physical level and logical level so that it can operate; this is quite similar to other type’s networks. Physical level of fiber optic networks includes optical fiber and the components; logical level of the fiber optic network includes protocols and services. Here the protocol is a set of necessary rules for communications to flow between source and destination. Services means the sets of operations needed to provide the communication from source to destination.
SONET, the synchronous optical network is one type of first generation fiber optic network. Its physical level consists of optic fiber and electronic devices. SONET adopt two topologies, point to point and ring. SONET and its European counterpart, the SDH fiber optic network, are powerful communication fiber optic networks.
ATM (asynchronous transfer mode) is another widely used system. ATM does not rely on specific physical media. Transmission can be effected through the already existed network without need for conversion of data format. ATM’s ability to transmit any type of information at high speed makes it popular used fiber optic network today.
To function properly, fiber optic networks need to be managed. Usually the management function is realized by using special components integrated into the network. Major management functions of the fiber optic network include configuration, fault management and security.