In the Internet of Things (IoT), a huge number of sensors, actuators and other equipment for data acquisition and processing will be interconnected by means of an omnipresent communication network able to efficiently support heterogeneous transmission technologies and applications. On the one hand, advanced optical communication systems, which already play a significant role in modern networks, are currently evolving to meet very high requirements of modern applications. On the other hand, there are already many ways to utilize optical components and effects for building precise, efficient, and reliable sensors. Thus, optical technologies have the potential to greatly help in realizing future smart infrastructures and systems. This paper gives an overview of currently available and emerging optical technologies for sensing and communication applications and reviews their possible application in the context of the IoT for realizing smart systems and infrastructures.
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