Li-Fi (Light Fidelity)-The future technology In Wireless communication
Whether you’re using wireless internet in a coffee shop, stealing it from the guy next door, or competing for bandwidth at a conference, you have probably gotten frustrated at the slow speeds you face when more than one device is tapped into the network. As more and more people and their many devices access wireless internet, clogged airwaves are going to make it. One germen phycist ‘Harald Haas’ has come up with a solution he calls “data through illumination” –taking the fiber out of fiber optic by sending data through an LED light bulb that varies in intensity faster than the human eye can follow. It’s the same idea band behind infrared remote controls but far more powerful. Haas says his invention, which he calls DLIGHT, can produce data rates faster than 10 megabits per second, which is speedier than your average broadband connection. He envisions a future where data for laptops, smart phones, and tablets is transmitted through the light in a room. And security would be snap – if you can’t see the light, you can’t access the data.
Li-Fi technology is a ground-breaking light-based communication technology, which makes use of light waves instead of radio technology to deliver data. Using the visible light spectrum, Li-Fi technology can transmit data and unlock capacity which is 10,000 times greater than that available within the radio spectrum. The visible light spectrum is plentiful, free and unlicensed, mitigating the radio frequency spectrum crunch effect.
Li-Fi technology will in future enable faster, more reliable internet connections, even when the demand for data usage has outgrown the available supply from existing technologies such as 4G, LTE and Wi-Fi. It will not replace these technologies, but will work seamlessly alongside them. Using light to deliver wireless internet will also allow connectivity in environments that do not currently readily support Wi-Fi, such as aircraft cabins, hospitals and hazardous environments. Light is already used for data transmission in fiber-optic cables and for point to point links, but Li-Fi is a special and novel combination of technologies that allow it to be universally adopted for mobile ultra high speed internet communications.
The wide use of solid state lighting offers an opportunity for efficient dual use lighting and communication systems. Innovation in LED and photon receiver technology has ensured the availability of suitable light transmitters and detectors, while advances in the modulation of communication signals for these types of components has been advanced through signal processing techniques, such as multiple-input-multiple-output (MIMO), to become as sophisticated as those used in mobile telecommunications.
Li-Fi technology is being developed into a ubiquitous systems technology, consisting of application specific combinations of light transmitters, light receivers including solar cells, efficient computational algorithms and networking capabilities that can be deployed in a wide range of communication scenarios and in a variety of device platforms. Pure Li-Fi was founded in 2012 with the goal of commercializing the technology. The demo area it set up at MWC consisted of three Li-Fi access points. These were roughly brick-sized boxes attached to LED down lighters, covering an area of around 20 square meters. The boxes effectively turn the lights into wireless antennas. To receive data from these lights you need a dongle that acts as a wireless modem of sorts, which is plugged into your laptop or tablet. The dongles were a bit smaller than a pack of cards and plug in via USB, which also provides the power. There’s a sensor that catches the light coming down and then an infrared component that sends a signal back up. The overhead lights also have a networking component, so it’s possible for multiple users to connect to a single light source, and to move from one light source to another without losing your connection. Li-Fi can already send 10 to 50 times the amount of data that Wi-Fi can in a single area.