July 23 2015 — Researchers at University of Virginia use LEDs to create wireless networks – cool! UVA researchers have developed a method for using the light waves from LED fixtures to carry the signals to and from wireless devices; at 300 Mbs per light – not bad!
I love it. And, they are serious about it. The university, and professors Maite Brandt-Pearce, of the Charles L. Brown Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Mohammad Noshad, a postdoctoral fellow in the Electrical Engineering Department at Harvard, have filed a patent. In an excerpt from UVA Today, Brandt-Pearce said that they have developed a modulation algorithm that increases the throughput of visible light communications data.
“We can transmit more data without using any additional energy. As more light fixtures get replaced with LED lights, you can have different access points to the same network,” Brandt-Pearce said.
Well, if it turns out to be viable, it could be one of the greatest enabling technologies of the 21st century, or the first half of it, at least. It, literally, could solve issues of limited and congested RF spectrum and deliver much faster wireless speeds. In what is being called “Li-Fi” system, a few months ago, researchers at Oxford University revealed how they used light to deliver data to a computer at more than 100 gigabits per second, with the potential for data rates of 3 terabits per second and up.
This has some interesting ramification. For one, it can be used where conventional wireless technologies might not be feasible, like operating rooms or other sensitive medical environments, or EMI/RFI sensitive manufacturing environments. And it has virtually no location limitations.
But, things like this pop up regularly. Before I buy the stock, I’ll wait for solid evidence.
Wi-Fi Invention Aims at Sharing UHF TV Spectrum
Another second-take comes in the form of data over UHF “Super” Wi-Fi. As valuable as spectrum is, UHF is the most underutilized portions of the wireless spectrum in the United States so it isn’t any wonder that some folks are eyeing it for spectrum-constrained technologies.
Edward Knightly, professor and department chair of electrical and computer engineering and director of the Wireless Network Group at Rice University in Houston is the inventor. He and the Rice engineers, recently demonstrated a system that wirelessly sends data over UHF simultaneous to television broadcasts. The extension of that is a new type of TV, or even remote, that could accommodate a Super Wi-Fi network.
A pilot super Wi-Fi project in a section of New Orleans, using technology developed at Rice University in Houston has been deployed. There is no data as to how it is going, yet.
However, before you all go out and get UHF antennas, remember that the UHF is licensed spectrum and the FCC ultimately can decide how it gets used via auctions and other things.