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Spirent KB Article
Doc ID: FAQ18362
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Spirent TestCenter: What is FEC and how does it work?
Forward Error Correction
What is FEC?
FEC is a process in which a transmitter of digital data adds extra information known as check bits to the data stream. The receiver analyzes the check bit information to locate and correct errors. The check information is then removed from the data stream and the remaining data is converted to its original voice, data, or video form.
Hence, in an FEC system, the receiver detects and corrects errors in real time as the data is being received.
FEC is an important advantage with digital communication technologies; FEC does not work with analog communications because the degradation of analog signals cannot be effectively corrected. The exact methods used for detection and correction depend on the type of information being transmitted and the form in which it was transmitted. The basics of these methods were laid down in 1948-49 by Claude Shannon in his famous series of papers, "Mathematical Theory of Communications."
What are the benefits of FEC?
FEC reduces the number of transmission errors, extends the operating range, and reduces the power requirements for communications systems. FEC also increases the effective systems throughput, even with the extra check bits added to the data bits, by eliminating the need to retransmit data corrupted by random noise.
Refer to the following KB article that explains specific details about FEC for MX3 cards in STC:
- Spirent TestCenter: Questions about FEC counters on MX3 cards
Product : Spirent TestCenter