How the fibre communications revolution began

Multi-fibre cable Hitchin-Stevenage system

Multi-fibre cable used in the Hitchin-Stevenage system 1977

Optical fibre cable used in the 140 Mbit/sec Hitchin-Stevenage system. 4 Fibres, plus 4 copper wires for monitoring, plus a central strength member.

2016: Half a Century of Optical Fibre Communications

2016 was the 50th anniversary of the publication that started it all.

Optical Fibre has transformed our world yet is now almost completely ignored.

The reasons?:

  • It is largely hidden (beneath our streets and oceans).
  • No surviving commercial organisation has an interest in promoting the STL history.
  • Few remember just how poor global communications used to be.

Useful Links

For anyone who enjoyed STL

STL Quarter Century Club

For the full story of optical communication see

"City of Light - The Story of Fiber Optics" by Jeff Hecht

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