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Could Li-Fi spark a communications revolution like Wi-Fi?

By Dick Meredith

Multi-tasking micro-lights now being developed could initiate an amazing transformation for the future of communications by using light to carry information over the internet.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Tiny light-emitting diode (LED) lights could deliver Wi-Fi-like internet communications, while simultaneously displaying information and providing illumination for homes, offices and many other locations.

Over the next four years, a consortium of universities in the United Kingdom will be developing this innovative technology to help unleash the full potential of “Li-Fi” - the transmission of internet communications using visible light rather than the radio waves and microwaves currently in use.

The project is being led by the University of Strathclyde, Scotland, with funding from the UK’s Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). Although the potential possibilities offered by Li-Fi are being explored all over the world, this EPSRC-funded consortium is pursuing a radical, distinctive vision that could deliver enormous benefits.

The term Li-Fi was coined by one of the partners in the project, Professor Harald Haas from the University of Edinburgh in a talk in July 2011. Underpinning Li-Fi is the use of LEDs, a rapidly spreading lighting technology that is expected to become dominant over the next 20 years.

Imperceptibly, LEDs flicker on and off thousands of times a second. By altering the length of the flickers, it is possible to send digital information to specially adapted PCs and other electronic devices - making Li-Fi the...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

London Press Service