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What Are Fiber Optic Cables Made Of?

What Are Fiber Optic Cables Made Of?

Fiber optic cable have become the backbone of modern communication networks, enabling high-speed data transmission over long distances. They are widely used in various industries, including telecommunications, internet connectivity, and data centers. In this blog, we will delve into the composition of fiber optic cable, exploring the materials that make them efficient and reliable.

Fiber Core Material

At the heart of a fiber optic cable lies the core, which carries the light signals used for data transmission. The core is typically composed of glass or plastic, chosen for its superior optical properties. Glass cores offer better transmission characteristics, especially for long-distance applications, while plastic cores tend to be cost-effective and suitable for shorter distances.

Cladding Material

Surrounding the core is the cladding, which helps guide and contain the light within the core. The cladding is made of a material with a lower refractive index than the core. This difference in refractive index causes the light to reflect internally, ensuring it stays within the optical fiber rather than escaping.

Buffer Coating

To protect the delicate core and cladding, a buffer coating is applied directly over the cladding. This coating is typically made of a polymer, such as acrylic or nylon. It acts as a cushion against physical stress, moisture, and other environmental factors that could potentially damage the fiber optic cable.

Fiber Optic Cable

Strength Members

Fiber optic cable often incorporate strength members for added durability and tensile strength. These strength members can be made of materials such as aramid yarn (such as Kevlar) or fiberglass. They provide structural support and protect the optical cable from stretching or breaking under tension.

Outer Jacket

The outermost layer of the fiber optic cable is the jacket, which shields the optical cable from external elements, such as abrasion, moisture, and chemicals. The jacket is typically made of a robust and flexible material, like polyethylene (PE) or polyvinyl chloride (PVC). The choice of jacket material depends on the specific application and environmental conditions.

Aramid Yarn

Aramid yarn, such as Kevlar, is commonly used as strength members in fiber optic cable. These yarns provide additional tensile strength and help protect the optical cable from stretching or breaking under tension. Aramid yarn is known for its high strength-to-weight ratio, excellent thermal stability, and resistance to abrasion. They are typically placed in the optical cable design to enhance its overall mechanical strength and durability.

Fiber Optic

Armored Tape

In certain applications where extra protection is needed, fiber optic cable may include an armored layer. Armoring involves adding a metal or non-metallic sheath around the optical cable, providing increased resistance to physical damage, rodents, moisture, and other external hazards. The armor layer can be made of materials such as steel, aluminum, or corrugated steel tape, depending on the specific requirements of the installation environment.


Fiber optic cable are meticulously designed using a combination of materials to ensure efficient and reliable data transmission. The glass or plastic core, cladding, buffer coating, strength members, and outer jacket work together harmoniously to protect the delicate optical components and maintain the integrity of the transmitted signals. Understanding the composition of fiber optic cable helps us appreciate their remarkable capabilities and highlights their importance in powering our modern communication networks.

UnitekFiber is dedicated to providing high quality fiber optic cable that meet your specific requirements. For more detailed information, please visit our website at www.unitekfiber.com. We look forward to supporting you with our reliable and efficient fiber optic solutions.

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