Researchers develop 800Mbps Optical WLAN network with LED light array


5 Aug 2011
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Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute of Telecommunications and the Heinrich Heinz Institute in Germany claim they have developed a practical implementation of Visual Light Communication (VLC), achieving an 800Mbps Optical WLAN connection, using flickering LED lights for line-of-sight networking.
While the idea of using LED lights that flicker faster than the human eye can perceive for data transmission purposes it not very new, and has been tried several times before, this particular implementation is practical in that it is fast enough, and reliable enough to be actually used in real world applications, where rooms bear large arrays of white, green, blue and red LED light sources which transmit discrete data over flickers to optical receivers connected or embedded in PCs, media players or mobile units.
There, however, are plenty of disadvantages to line-of-sight networking, as it can easily be interrupted if temporarily blocked or covered, and, the necessity of having a lit environment for the data transmission to work has also to be considered. All in all, VLC will probably never replace radio-based wireless networking, but might have some uses in certain locations, and also augment traditional data networks.

Source : Digit magazine.
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