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A lambda circuit is an individual wavelength of light for transmitting data on a strand of fiber-optic cable. Using separate lasers, each tuned to a slightly different frequency, multiple lambdas can be projected down a single fiber strand to carry multiple streams of data.
DWDM (dense wavelength division multiplexing) is the technology for projecting multiple lambda circuits on fiber strands. Currently, 200 lambdas per fiber is common, but thousands are possible.
Lambda networking is essentially frequency division multiplexing in the light range with each lambda occupying a part of the light spectrum in the same way that radio and TV stations occupy a part of the radio spectrum. Think of each lambda as being a different color of light, each of which can carry many gigabits of data. Each lambda is separated by a guard band of a certain width. The better the tuning, the more lambdas per fiber.
Copyright (c) 2001 Tom Sheldon and Big Sur Multimedia.